During last week’s work session, county commissioners reviewed the final design plan for Patriots Park in southwest Cherokee, and also reviewed East Park’s preliminary design plan, which they said still needs tweaking.
Cherokee Recreation and Parks Agency Director Bryan Reynolds said officials hope to bid out construction of Patriots Park in August. He said if all goes to plan, ground breaking could begin in October and the park could be ready by fall 2012.
Patriots Park, located off Kellogg Creek Road and Victory Drive near Towne Lake, is roughly 34 acres and calls for two multi-use fields and two baseball/softball fields, as well as the county’s first Miracle League baseball field for special-needs children. It’s also planned to include the county park system’s first dog park.
Construction on Patriot’s Park is expected to cost around $6.6 million. Both it and East Park are being funded with county parks bond revenue.
East Park is roughly 149 acres along Highway 20/Cumming Highway at Jack Page Lane and Water Tank Road.
Preliminary plans include nine baseball/softball fields, four multi-purpose fields for football, lacrosse and soccer, four tennis courts, four pickleball courts, walking trails, concession and toilet facilities, pavilions, picnic areas and a destination playground.
Reynolds said cost for the project is roughly $9.1 million, which also includes road and sewer enhancements.
East Park is also slated to include a commercial parcel and a parcel designated for a future library.
The park will incorporate what’s known as a family festival concept, which would attract developments that would compliment the park, such as sit-down restaurants, ice cream and yogurt shops, and sporting good stores.
Reynolds said some of Forsyth County parks have a similar concept.
The county expects to send out bids for the park by October and hopes construction will begin by the end of December. Construction for East Park is expected to take between 13 and 14 months, Reynolds said, meaning the park could open at the start of 2013.
County Manager Jerry Cooper said buzz has been generated in the community about the parks.
“Residents have expressed excitement about the proposed parks and have expressed their desire that the parks open as soon as possible,” he added.
Along with the park, the county is also hoping to piggy back on Georgia Department of Transportation planned road improvements.
Assistant County Engineer Brett Buchanan said the county would like to work with the state DOT to use a portion of a planned truck-passing lane as its left-turn lane into the park.
The goal, he added, would be to have a decision handed down to the county in the next month.
Cooper said the county is confident the state would grant their wish.