Basketball court, walking trails closed while Nelson City Park moves along

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Slated improvements to the basketball court and the walking trail in Nelson will be put on the backburner for the time being as the park is still under construction and the weather will not permit proper conditions to make repairs to the court area.However the park project and new bathrooms are coming along as planned. City Manager Brandy Edwards advised the board they will need to make a decision on what to do with the current bathrooms in the future. They are in a state of disrepair and have suffered vandalism. At the November 4 council meeting she recommended they be demolished since new ones are being erected with the park bonds. The board will consider it during their December meeting.

Edwards has been working with the Environmental Protection Department concerning the closed basketball court as it was discovered it is erected in the state buffer zone of the nearby creek. Anything past repaving and replacing the existing fence will have to be approved by the E.P.D. She suggested a retaining wall be entertained as the entrance to the court isn’t easily accessible. Even repaving at this point is in question as the surface needs to meet a certain temperature to cure and that won’t occur until at least next spring.

“If we open it up without the fence being fixed and some kid goes down there and gets hurt we’re gonna get sued,”

Council Member Jackie Jarrett related.

Exacerbating the problem is the signage the city has put up keeps disappearing. Edwards believes there is thievery involved but resident Lamar Kellett said he observed one sign that had apparently fallen and been destroyed by mowers. As a precautionary measure she has ordered duplicate signs.

Those problems addressed, Edwards stressed that since the baseball fields are the access point for the walking trail, leaving the entire area closed for the time being is the reasonable decision. She also suggested upgrades for the baseball fields be considered as all other park areas will be improved and leaving them out rather than encompassing each facility on-site doesn’t make sense.

The board decided to take no action and leave all the facilities closed for the time being.

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