Corridor getting new 40-acre park

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By Amy Ryffel-Kragh

It’s official. The 200 Corridor will get a new 40-acre park, but when it will be open to visitors is unknown.

Pat Gabriel, president of Parks and Recreation Advisory Council (PRAC), said it would be more than a year before the design plans for the property get under way. “It takes awhile,” she said to get a park “online.” The design process has been budgeted for October 2010.

Marion County will pay $480,000 for the property, which is near the back of Oak Run and Forest Glenn. The county plans to use $280,000 from Pennies for Parks to pay for the property.

To cover the remaining $200,000, they have applied for the Land and Water Conservation Fund grant. Gina Pebbles, acting director for Marion County Parks and Recreation, said she is “hopeful” that the county will get the grant. “I feel very confident with it,” Pebbles said.

If the money has not been awarded in time for closing, all of the funds will be taken from Pennies for Parks. Once the grant money is received, $200,000 will be reimbursed to Pennies for Parks. Either way, “We’ve got enough money to go forward and close,” Gabriel said. However, if the county does not get the grant, all of the money would come from Pennies for Parks, which would leave no funds left for other projects.

The county has 60 days from April 7 to close on the property. Pebbles said they are waiting for the boundary survey to be completed, which will show them exactly where the property lines fall.

Plans for the park

Though it is still early, Gabriel said they want the park to be an “active” one, which would consist of amenities like a ball field. She added that they are hoping to get various groups like the Lions and Rotary clubs to get involved in the project in the future.