COVINGTON — The Covington Council held a work session/public meeting Tuesday prior to its regular meeting to discuss the proposed Maple Street park plan and to obtain public comments.
Representatives of Poggemeyer Design Group were in attendance to provide a brief overview of the proposed plans and to answer any questions.
The plans include development on the land which formerly housed a school. Streets surrounding the land are Maple, N. Grant, and University streets. Catty-corner, and across the intersection of Maple and Grant streets, are the recently-renovated basketball courts.
“The very first part of the project, which is almost completed, is the restoration of the basketball courts,” said Paulette Mills, client relations representative for Poggemeyer. “We were fortunate to receive grant funding that paid for half of that project and we’re going to be looking for that same program to help us move forward with the rest of the projects that have been discussed.”
The projects for the proposed park plan include a splash pad, concession and restrooms, shade sail canopy, a band stage, new sidewalks/pathways/landscaping, and a metal fence with piers.
According to Bill Steele, director of architecture for Poggemeyer, the entire plan is estimated to be a three- to six-year project.
The project is planned to be completed in four phases:
• Phase one: Splash pad and band shelter — estimated cost of $822,787.63.
• Phase two: Park shelter concessions and restroom facility — estimated cost of $931,704.13.
• Phase three: Landscape and fencing — estimated cost of $165,082.50.
• Phase four: Perimeter curb and sidewalk replacement — estimated cost of $370,790.48.
Busse noted that the goal is to complete the entire project using grants and donations, as opposed to general fund money, and added that around $90,000 has already been donated toward the project.
Comments were heard from two residents in attendance.
Judy Smith, who resides on University Street, said she likes the design and thinks the park will be a nice addition to the village. Smith also inquired about whether or not benches will be placed near the splash pad, to which the Poggemeyer representatives affirmed, stating benches will be placed throughout the park.
Chris Haines, president and CEO of Marias Technology, expressed concerns about the band stage and suggested it be built at an elevation to differientiate the stage itself from ground level, as a way to separate the band area from the viewing area. Haines added this elevation would also help protect equipment in the event of rain during performances.
Village Administrator Mike Busse affirmed that the stage would be built as such, allowing for proper drainage and separation.
Busse noted that comments from the community are still welcome and may be sent in through the village’s website or by calling the village office, at 937-473-3420.
In other news:
• Council waived the three-reading rule and voted to approve a resolution authorizing the village administrator to enter into a contract with Mote and Associates for engineering, design, and bidding services for the Water Treatment Plant media replacement project, at a cost of $7,595.
• A first reading was held on a resolution authorizing the village administrator to enter into a contract with Mote and Associates for engineering, design, and bidding services for the WWTP RAS pump replacement project, at a cost of $32,230.
• A first reading was held on a resolution authorizing the village administrator to enter into a contract with Access Engineering Solutions for engineering, design, bidding and construction administration services for the Pearl Street water line replacement project, at a cost of $12,500.
• A first reading was held on a resolution authorizing the village administrator and fiscal officer to renew the public employee health insurance plan with Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, at an increase of 4.8 percent.
• Council approved authorization for the village administrator to advertise for RFQs for the right-of-way acquisition and appraisal services for the state Route 41 (High Street) reconstruction project.
• Council approved authorization for the village administrator to advertise for bids for the 2020 sidewalk improvement project.
• Council approved authorization for the village administrator to advertise for bids for the Ludlow Street reconstruction/2020 paving project.
• Paul Reece, candidate for Miami County Sheriff, and Wade Westfall, candidate for Miami County Commissioner, were both in attendance to introduce themselves and seek public support for their respective bids for office.
• The official opening date for the newly-constructed Casey’s General Store is set for Feb. 28.
The next regular council meeting will be held Monday, March 2, at 7 p.m.