June 30, 2016

Partly sunny

City moves forward on Mellert Park splash pad

MEDINA — Temperatures might be below freezing this week, but the city is moving forward with the construction of a splash pad at Ray Mellert Park off North Huntington Street.

City Engineer Patrick Patton said bids to design the splash pad will go out in May or June, with the hope it will be available for use by 2012 at the latest, and possibly before the end of this summer.

GAZETTE FILE Kids cool off on a July afternoon last year at the splash pad at Fred Greenwood Park in Medina. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO)

GAZETTE FILE Kids cool off on a July afternoon last year at the splash pad at Fred Greenwood Park in Medina. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO)

“We’re just getting started,” he said. “We had funding approved through a grant and are taking steps to get an architect on board to begin project design.”

The project is expected to cost about $187,000 and will be paid for through a $300,000 Neighborhood Revitalization Grant. Patton said the system could cost $7,000 to $10,000 a year.

The city has two options: a freshwater system where “all the water basically goes down the drain,” Patton said, and a recirculating system that acts like a treatment facility.

The treatment system is preferred because it uses less water, but it is more expensive to install, he said. The freshwater system is less expensive to install, which could allow the city to build more features, but it is more expensive to operate, he added.

At-large Councilman John Coyne said he wants to make sure money is budgeted to cover operating costs before the city proceeds.

“Everything is great when something is being paid for by a grant, but we have to remember when we receive something by grant there are operating costs associated with it,” he said.

Though the grant does not cover operating expenses, Coyne said carry-forward money in the parks fund likely could cover operating expenses.

Ward 3 Councilman Mark Kolesar said he thought construction of the splash pad was important to enhance recreation in the northwest area of the city.

In order to obtain the grant, the city had to conduct five public meetings with residents who live in the target area where the grant would be used. At the meetings, residents discussed how they would like to see the funds, if awarded, spent.

Some of the top projects included expanding services at Ray Mellert Park, Kolesar said.

“We just built a new playground, and this would enhance it,” Kolesar said. “We’re going to have to make it work.”

Another splash pad, which opened in 2007 in Fred Greenwood Park on Medina’s southwest side, includes water hoses and spray features.

Contact Lisa Hlavinka at (330) 721-4048 or lhlavinka@medina-gazette.com.