Parks Board outlines future for parks



Within the next five years, people could see a lot of changes at two parks in Brownstown.

Shannon McLeod with Priority Project Resources, the town’s grant writer, recently shared the Brownstown Parks Board’s five-year plan during a town council meeting.

This year, the focus will be on the Brownstown Pool, which is situated within Brownstown Park on West Bridge Street.

The board would like to replace the play feature in the leisure pool.

“Apparently, it’s pretty worn, and some edges are rough and whatnot,” McLeod said. “For the safety of the kids, that is one of the things that they would like to do.”

The plans also call for installing a new fence around the main pool area and installing some security lighting and cameras in the park.

In 2019, the focus will turn toward the softball field. That includes installing an Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant walkway and a retaining wall behind the field near the pond.

“There is a retaining wall that is made out of railroad ties that’s kind of falling in, and the pathway around is kind of rough to get around, so they would like to do a nice walkway and retaining wall with concrete or some sort of asphalt,” McLeod said.

The project also would include new bleachers, dugouts, a fence and a scoreboard.

In 2020, the board wants to fix up a low-lying area on the left side of the park’s entrance. Right now, it’s used to dump gravel and other material. The board would like to have it compacted and pave or gravel the area for additional parking, McLeod said.

“I’ve been out there during the summer months, and it’s kind of rough out there, so they would like to make that into a parking lot and put some more security lights and cameras in,” she said.

Then in 2021, the board expressed interest in buying the two lots for sale next to Heritage Park in the 100 block of East Walnut Street. With the town hoping to buy the lots and apply for a grant to build a community center building there, however, McLeod said the parks board may be able to come up with some other project.

That year, the board also wants to replace the fencing around the volleyball court at Brownstown Park.

A project planned for 2022 also may be shifted. The parks board wanted to construct a building for restrooms at Heritage Park, but if the town receives funding for the community center, it would include restroom facilities.

The board also would like to add a splash pad at that park.

McLeod shared copies of the plan with members of the parks board so they could review it. Then she will email the plan to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources early this month to review and make comments.

She said a public hearing will be in February, and then final edits would be made so it can be submitted to the state by April.

The parks board also highlighted larger long-term projects, which would require McLeod’s help in seeking grant funding.

One is to install a walking and biking path around the perimeter of Brownstown Park.

Another is to acquire a 12-acre wooded area behind the park, which would expand the park to 25 acres.

“Those are big pipe-dream things on a larger scale, but we could start getting this plan in and look at doing some grant funding for them in the coming years,” McLeod said.

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