New park now ac­ces­si­ble

Com­ple­tion, ded­i­ca­tion de­layed un­til spring

The News Herald (Willoughby, OH) - - Front Page - By Betsy Scott [email protected]­ald.com @Re­porterBetsy on Twit­ter

The first phase of Spring­brook Gar­dens Park still isn’t done, but the pub­lic is now wel­come to visit.

Men­tor City Man­ager Kevin Filip­iak made that an­nounce­ment at this week’s Coun­cil meet­ing.

Of­fi­cials had sought to dis­suade park use dur­ing con­struc­tion. This past week­end, how­ever, the con­trac­tor was able to get the first layer of as­phalt down along the main drive and park­ing lot.

“It ap­pears that the re­main­ing sur­face course, and prob­a­bly the walk­ing paths, will be de­layed un­til spring,” Filip­iak said. “Un­til then, the con­trac­tor will in­stall tem­po­rary as­phalt tran­si­tions to elim­i­nate any po­ten­tial trip­ping haz­ards so that the path will be safe for pub­lic ac­cess un­til that paving is com­plete.”

Ward 2 Coun­cil­man Matt Dono­van in­quired about whether snow­plow­ing ser­vices would be pro­vided this sea­son. Parks & Recre­ation Di­rec­tor Kenn Kamin­ski con­firmed that they would.

City lead­ers had hoped to open the park with a ded­i­ca­tion cer­e­mony in Oc­to­ber, but de­lays were caused by a rainy streak and the con­crete sub­con­trac­tor’s busi­ness fold­ing just prior to com­ple­tion.

“Even with that ini­tial course down, peo­ple will be able to walk it dur­ing the win­ter months and, come spring time, that fi­nal course will go down,” Filip­iak said.

Sched­uled for com­ple­tion yet this year is be­gin­ning the wa­ter­line tap, san­i­tary tap, and park­ing blocks and strip­ing, he said.

In Oc­to­ber, Coun­cil­man at large Ray Kirch­ner ex­pressed dis­ap­point­ment about the de­lays and con­cern about do­ing the ded­i­ca­tion in the cold. The event now is planned for spring.

“We wanted nice weather for the ded­i­ca­tion,” Kirch­ner said.

The park im­prove­ments — com­bined with the Two Town Ditch restora­tion for $4.6 mil­lion — in­volved ex­ca­va­tion and em­bank­ment of on­site ma­te­rial as well as off­site fill be­ing used to de­velop mound­ing for prairie lands. In ad­di­tion, it in­cluded adding road­way and park­ing ar­eas with 276 spa­ces, 1.7 miles of as­phalt walk­ing paths, stream cul­verts, pond and ditch en­hance­ments, util­i­ties for fu­ture re­strooms and a board­walk along the pond. Pic­nic ar­eas and a tree farm are planned as well.

The 50-acre site at 6842 Heis­ley Road adds to the city’s 1,200 acres of pro­tected park­land. It was named in honor of the for­mer nurs­ery on the site. Spring­brook Gar­dens be­longed to the Schultz fam­ily for more than 100 years and was among the last large pieces of un­de­vel­oped, pri­vately owned parcels in Men­tor when it was sold to the city in 2014 for $2.5 mil­lion. In 2016, an­other $335,000 was spent to pur­chase more land, in­clud­ing a cen­tury home.

BETSY SCOTT — THE NEWS-HER­ALD

The board­walk and pond are among the fea­tures fin­ished at Spring­brook Gar­dens Park in Men­tor.

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