Sights and Scenes: Gainesville's Depot Park

Sights and scenes from a former industrial wasteland that has been transformed into a $5.9 million contemporary greenspace and regional stormwater facility: Gainesville's Depot Park

About Depot Park

Depot Park’s mission it to help fulfill the City of Gainesville’s vision to set the standard of excellence for a top ten mid-sized American city, recognized nationally as an innovative provider of high quality, cost effective services, providing exceptional guest experiences that enhance the quality of life for the Gainesville community.

Depot Park is the highest used and most visible public space in the City of Gainesville. Currently, the park serves as one of the main economic drivers in downtown, striving to engage and partner with local businesses, organizations and clubs. One of the top goals of Depot Park is to strengthen community bonds and foster the City’s economic vitality.

Depot Park provides a service to the public that is immeasurable on a monetary scale, but continues to improve the quality of life for citizens of Gainesville and beyond (survey July 2017).

Depot Park has established high expectations for public spaces, and serves as a model for brownfield site remediation and urban parks. Depot Park is helping to lead the movement of transforming the City of Gainesville to ‘Citizen Centered, People Empowered.’

Since opening in August 2016, the park has hosted a large variety of programs and events aimed to engage all ages, ethnicities, genders and socioeconomic backgrounds. Each activity is specifically developed to create a unique, high-quality and memorable guest experience.

Depot Park visitors utilize the variety of open spaces for a wide-range of activities. A snapshot of the park, on any given day, would include walkers and cyclists enjoying the paths; an individual reading at a picnic table; a group on a blanket enjoying a picnic; kids having a blast in the play area; a birthday party being celebrated under a pavilion; and a kite being flown on the hill.

In addition, the park hosts reoccurring weekly, monthly and annual programs and events. A few of the more popular one’s are swing dance lessons, fitness classes, tours, kids arts and crafts, game nights, DJ dance parties, and movies. Depot Park’s Birthday Celebrations, Sparks in the Park New Year’s Eve firework display and Light the Park holiday light display are events that people far and near look forward to every year!


Historic Depot Building

The Gainesville Downtown Train Depot is one of only three surviving railroad depots in Florida that were built prior to the start of the American Civil War. Built in 1860 to serve David Levy Yulee’s Florida Railroad, the depot operated until 1948 when passenger services were relocated to another depot. Today, the historic depot is occupied by restaurants and event space.

Children’s Play Area