The improvement plan being proposed by the Lake Zurich Park and Recreation Advisory Board has a price tag of $760,000. However, advisory board members hope to get the message out that that price could drop down to just about $200,000.
Park board members hope to convince the Lake Zurich Village Board, on Monday night, June 18, that the improvement plan is a win-win situation.
“We’re getting a big bang for our buck,” Advisory Board Chairwoman Dawn Brazier said Tuesday night at a special advisory board meeting.
“This is fiscally responsible. It makes sense. We’re getting a big return on a small investment and using the park improvement fund for what it’s supposed to be used for,” said park Trustee Tim Andrews.
The Village Board needs to approve the plan before the park board can apply for an Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development Program grant, which could fund 50 percent of the cost. OSLAD is a state-financed grant program that provides funding assistance to local government agencies for acquisition and/or development of land for public parks and open space.
The Special Recreation Association tax levy would fund an estimated $165,800 and the park also expects to get about $20,000 in community donations.
“At the end of the day, we’re only paying $194,400 net,” Brazier said.
Last year, the park advisory board brought a $1 million .
Park board members stress that the Kids Kingdom playground is in disrepair and needs to be replaced. They say, with the grant and other funding, the entire project would cost about $94,000 more than just replacing Kids Kingdom.
Park Director Mike Perkins also noted that improvements, such as the large shelter and amphitheater, could be rented and bring money into the village.
Plans for Paulus Park include:
- A tree house-themed community-built playground;
- An interactive, electronic Neos playground for kids, teens and adults;
- An amphitheater;
- A 100-person capacity shelter for large groups;
- Wetland restoration that will promote conservation education opportunities;
- A fishing dock, emergency access pier;
- Improved accessibility for people with disabilities;
- Nature trail.
“What we can’t lose sight of is that these improvements are a high priority in our master plan. These are improvements the public wanted,” said Kevin Demchinski, principal from Norris Design Inc., the planning/landscape architecture firm that is consulting on the project.
Perkins said the work on could begin next summer, if approved by the Village Board and if the OSLAD grant goes through.