Almost two years after the Red Bank council rejected three private-sector proposals for use of the red clay tennis courts in Marine Park, the governing body is laying the groundwork for a possible makeover of the entire 2.2-acre riverfront park.

A view from within the park looking north toward the horseshoe-shaped marina on the Navesink River. (Photo by John T. Ward; satellite image above by Google Maps. Click to enlarge)

The council’s parks and rec committee has scheduled the two public-input workshops to solicit ideas on what should be done to improve the park. They’re scheduled for Wednesday, March 21, at 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. at borough hall to accommodate as many residents as possible, said Councilman Erik Yngstrom, who heads the committee.

Leading the brainstorming sessions will be representatives of Kimley-Horn, a planning firm hired by the council in December under a $41,000 contract to develop a concept plan. Suggestions concerning amenities, signage, parking, layout, activities and more are all on the table, Yngstrom said.

The aim of the two-part session is to ask the public “what do you guys want down there?” he said.

The park, “hasn’t been the center of our town the way it was before Hurricane Sandy” in October, 2012, Yngstrom said. “We want to make it the center of town again.”

Kimley-Horn is expected to hold three more rounds of public hearings as the concept plan advances, though none have yet been scheduled. Yngstrom said he’s hoping one of the meetings can be held in the park itself.

Meantime, the park’s vaunted clay tennis courts, which were damaged by the hurricane, have not reopened since.