Board discusses several projects slated for 2022

By Sheryl Roadcap - [email protected]

SIDNEY — The Sidney Recreation Board discussed the various ongoing projects within the city of Sidney and its parks during its March 4 meeting.

Parks and Recreation Director Duane Gaier presented the board with a PowerPoint presentation on 2022 Sidney Water Park rates that were adjusted based on surrounding neighborhood pool/water parks, meeting minutes said. In 2022, he said it is budgeted the city will take in $75,000 at the gate, with $140,000 being subsidized by the general fund. Park staff recommending a .25 cent increase for daily admissions, to raise the current price of $4.50 to $4.75. Gaier also, recommended raising the season passes by $1 from $35 to $36. The board agreed with the recommendation. Gaier then presented the information to the Sidney City Council for discussion at its March 14 meeting. He was directed by council to prepare legislation to bring back for further consideration.

Regarding volunteer hours in 2021, Gaier informed the board there were a total of 832 volunteer hours recorded in 2021. The volunteers were from United Way Day of Action, Honda employees and Adopt a Park.

There are several capital projects slated for 2022, and they include the following:

• Tawawa Park-Wagner Glade play structure replacement — $39,000 is budgeted for the whole project, Gaier said; $35,000 will be used for the structure. The remaining balance will be used for gravel, concrete and maybe a bench.

•Senior Center of Sidney Shelby County roof replacement — This is project will cost $205,000. A grant of $50,000 will assist with the funding of the project, Gaier said, with Senior Citizens Foundation group to donate $80,000 to this project, as well. The remaining $80,000 will be paid by the city of Sidney.

• Canal Feeder Trail — A permit has been received from the Army Core of Engineers for this project to move forward. Currently the committee is working with the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), due to this trail going under their bridge and out the other side. For the plan to move forward, they are waiting on ODOT to review the plans and sign off on them.

• Urban Trail Study — Jeff Raible, executive director of the Sidney Visitors Bureau has worked on getting funding for half the cost for this study. The study is working to connect the canal feeder trail to downtown and then downtown trails to Tawawa Park trails.

The following projects are planned for the incoming American Rescue Plan Act (APRA) funds:

• Pickle ball courts — The courts will be put in on the northwest corner of Custenborder Fields parking lot. This will provide four to six courts.

• Robert O. New Park Trail walk path — This path will go around the outside perimeter of the park. The trail will be 6-feet-wide for walking pleasure.

• Heritage Manor basketball court — The half-court will be placed on the west side of the lot.

• Parks master plan — The last parks master plan was updated in 2009. The request for qualifications is currently out and due back on March 23.

In other business, the board also discussed a new Tawawa Park entrance sign at the entrance gate. A local donor agreed to fund the replace this sign. The price of the sign replacement is $10,600. Park staff will demo the old sign. Chad Stewart with Behr design has design a new sign. Gaier showed pictures of what the current sign looks like and a picture of the sign that Stewart has designed. The board agreed to the plans for the sign and this information was presented to City Council for discussion also at its March 14 meeting. Council directed Gaier to continue forward with the project.

In final business, Gaier also informed the board the Binkley Pavilion will have the formal dedication on July 22, 2022. He also reminded all that Tawawa Park will open to vehicle traffic on April 16, and on April 18th trout will be released at Tawawa Lake.

The next Sidney Recreation Board meeting is set for April 4.

By Sheryl Roadcap

[email protected]