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Grants Key To Madrona Park Upgrades

MONMOUTH -- Madrona Park could receive a major transformation beginning in 2014.

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Proposed upgrades to Madrona Park include a permanent restroom, arboretum and paved walking path.

MONMOUTH -- Madrona Park could receive a major transformation beginning in 2014.

Monmouth City Council earlier in April gave its approval to the application process to pursue a $350,000 Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Local Government Grant Program request.

The grant would fund the majority of construction costs for development of the Madrona Park Walking Trail and Arboretum.

"This is a project that will transform this park," Monmouth Community Development Director Mark Fancey said of the 9.8-acre site, the community's largest public park.

There are about 750 homes and 2,000 residents within a quarter-mile of the park.

The Madrona Park Walking Trail and Arboretum project includes:

* Construction of a .45-mile perimeter trail around the park. This would extend the existing .16-mile trail.

* Construction of an arboretum with native plantings and nature trails within a 2-acre eastern portion of the park. More than 90 trees would be planted.

* Installation of an irrigation system to serve the arboretum and practice fields located in the center portion of the park.

* Construction of a permanent restroom facility.

* Installation of additional playground equipment.

Fancey said the estimated cost for the entire project is nearly $620,000.

"This grant is very important to the project," Fancey said. "In 2011 the City Council discussed funding sources for various parks projects and expressed a desire that the bulk of the funding for the project would be through grants. This is the main way for us to fund this project."

The city is also hoping to receive a Recreational Trails Grant from the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department in the amount of $68,351.

Monmouth has also received $20,000 in local donations for the project -- $10,000 each from the Monmouth Garden Club and Monmouth Power & Light. The remaining $180,179 needed for the project would come from the city's Parks System Development Charges fund.

Monmouth will make a presentation before the state parks grant review board in June. It should know if it receives the funding sometime in July.

If the city receives the grant funding, construction on the project would begin in the summer of 2014.

Fancey noted that if the city doesn't receive the grants, the project would be done in phases and grants reapplied for in the future.

No matter what, he said the city has budgeted for construction of the restroom facility and expanded playground area, with work scheduled for the summer of 2014.

Fancey also noted that the city has received a great deal of support for the project. In additional to the monetary donations from Monmouth Garden Club and Monmouth Power & Light, nine other entities -- ranging from YMCA and Central Youth Sports to Western Oregon University groups -- have provided letters of support for the project.

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