Originally Published: February 10, 2013 10:17 p.m.
PRESCOTT - Depending on the decision of the Prescott City Council this week, a major park expansion could be under way by summer at Goldwater Lake.
At their regular meeting on Tuesday, council members will consider an $88,248 contract for the design and engineering of a two-phase expansion of the park at the city's popular Senator Highway-area lake.
The council meeting will take place at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Prescott City Hall, 201 S. Cortez St.
In previous discussions, council members have been receptive to the proposal to use park impact-fee money for the expansion project. In December, the council gave Parks and Recreation Director Joe Baynes the OK to go out for proposals for the design of the project.
Five firms responded to the city's request for statements of qualifications in January. A committee ranked the firms, and chose Kelly/Wise Engineering, Inc. as the top company for the project.
Baynes noted this past week that while the expansion would be designed as two phases, the city could choose to do the entire construction project at one time - an option that would be more economical. "Obviously, with the volume of work being greater, we would same some money," Baynes said.
The combination of the two phases - at a total cost of $700,000 to $800,000 - likely will be among the issues the council will consider on Tuesday.
"In order to proceed with the design, we need to know if phases one and two will be constructed together," City Manager Craig McConnell said.
Baynes said the full project would include two new ramada areas, two new restrooms, new drinking fountains, new parking areas, a new road, 50 day-use picnic areas spread throughout the area, a new playground, and a new water well and storage tank.
"The property is a little under-utilized," Baynes said Friday as he walked through the wooded area southeast of the existing park. "(The expansion) would spread the use out over the park."
Currently, Baynes said the existing ramada at Goldwater Lake is in high demand. Users make reservations about a year in advance, and the ramada is usually busy every weekend from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
The money for the project would come from the city's park impact-fee fund, which contained about $1.7 million this past December.
The city generated the money through its $715-per-home park impact fee that new homebuilders pay to help cover the costs of the impacts of growth.
City officials have stressed that state law limits the use of the park impact-fee fund to growth-related expansions to existing city parks.
The city expects the design to be complete by about May, in preparation for summer 2013 construction.
In other action, the council will:
Consider submitting two grant applications totaling $50,000 to the Governor's Office of Highway Safety. If awarded, the grant money would go toward the Prescott Police Department's ongoing DUI (driving under the influence) enforcement efforts, as well as for conducting speed and aggressive-driving enforcement.
Consider awarding a $269,583 contract to Alliance Street Work, Inc., of Camp Verde for a sidewalk-improvement project in the Dexter neighborhood in central Prescott.
The work would take place along Dameron Drive, Hillside Avenue, Ruth Street, and Bird Street, and would include 17,951 square feet of new sidewalk.
McConnell explained that the city would pay for the project through Community Development Block Grant (CDGB) money, which must be used in neighborhoods that meet federal low-to-moderate-income criteria.