Corinth set to upgrade city parks

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CORINTH — City officials hope to have an estimated $258,000 in citywide park improvements completed just in time for spring.

City Manager Jim Berzina said he expects construction in nine Corinth city parks to start within two to three weeks. The improvements include adding sun shading on playground equipment, installing playground sets, repairing picnic tables and installing some landscaping.

“It’s going be a noticeable change,” Berzina said. “We hope the changes will be pretty popular, and we hope to get feedback from our residents once everything is completed.”

In May 2012, the city’s Parks and Recreation Committee provided a list of needs for the neighborhood parks to city staff and the City Council.Last week, the council unanimously agreed to award the contract for improvements to American Parks Co., a Prosper-based playground equipment firm.

Public Works director Justin Brown said all work should be completed by April 1. He said American Parks Co. should begin construction in about a month, once company officials order the items to be installed.

To pay for the improvements, the city is using its Park Development Fund, which is designed for that purpose, Berzina said.

During a three-year period, officials allowed the park fund to grow through donations made by the city’s Economic Development Corporation and revenue generated through a park impact fee on a nearby apartment complex.

“A bulk of all the money being used on the parks is coming from the fees and Economic Development Corporation funds,” Berzina said.

Between the economic board’s donations and the impact fees, the park development fund generated more than $200,000 to be used on the city parks.

Construction on the park improvements will probably begin in February, once a contract between the city and American Parks Co. is completed. Berzina said city staff members are working on finalizing the contract.

“We hope to have everything completed just in time for kids to enjoy the new features during the spring and summer,” Berzina said.

Corinth resident Kate Green said she jogs in Meadow Oaks Park every day. The mother of two said the park improvements will benefit kids who like to use the playground equipment.

“In the summer, it gets really hot, and I always hear kids complaining that it’s too hot to climb or play on the equipment,” she said. “Anything that helps children stay active is a good idea.”

Left off the list of improvements were the basketball and sand volleyball courts the park committee requested in May.

Council and city staff member said the courts are expensive and require regular routine maintenance.

“When you make improvements, you want to make sure you can afford the installation and maintenance,” he said. “The courts are just a money hog.”

Berzina said the city will revisit the idea of adding sand volleyball and basketball courts sometime next year or the year after.

“We would like to look at our parks every year,” he said. “It would be nice to see what we can improve year to year.”

JOHN D. HARDEN can be reached at 940-566-6882. His e-mail address is jharden@dentonrc.com .

CORINTH PARK IMPROVEMENT PLAN

•  Corinth Farms Park — install two shade structures over play equipment

•  Fairview Park — install new play equipment designed for youngsters ages 2-5

•  Meadowview — install play equipment designed for youngsters ages 2-5 and two shade structures over play equipment

•  Mulholland Park — install shade structure over play equipment

•  Kensington Park — install shade structure over play equipment

•  Eagle Pass Park — install play equipment designed for youngsters ages 2-5 and two shade structures over play equipment

•  Woods Park — install shade structure over play equipment

•  Windsor Park — installing play equipment designed youngsters ages 2-5 and a shade structure over existing play equipment.

•  Meadows Oak Park — install two shade structures over play equipment

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