The Dorr Township Board Tuesday night voted 5-2 to fund the second phase of the new skate park on the north side of 142nd Avenue.
The board approved the expenditure of $30,000 last month for first phase and Tuesday night gave its blessing to $67,000 to finish the job.
Chris Gesink, representing the Parks Commission, said the total cost of the skate park is expected to be about $97,000. The first phase, $30,000 from the township’s public improvement fund, is paying for laying the concrete slab and doing the grading where the Graczyk house once stood. Dorr Township in the fall of 2012 bought 25 acres from the Graczyk fa
mily to expand the existing recreation park.
He noted the base for the concrete laid and the concrete are coming this week. The concrete work will be under budget by five to six thousand dollars. The plan is to have the sidewalk going to the skate park connect with the existing sidewalk.
Gesink last month showed an artist’s sketch of what the whole park might look like and mentioned efforts to secure state grants totaling $400,000 are being sought.
Township Trustee John Tuinstra objected to the lack of a positive commitment from businesses before moving to authorize funds and asked Gesink to guarantee the donated funds. He asked why the equipment could not be fabricated locally at lower cost.
Gesink said the equipment is specialized, requiring specialized equipment and work skills. He also explained that individual businesses will be asked to fund portions of the skate park, and thereby would be allowed to affix their logos to its portions.
Tuinstra and fellow Tru
stee Patty Senneker also objected to items being placed so late on Tuesday night’s meeting agenda late. Supervisor Jeff Miling replied that they try to have all items placed on the agenda early, but the Parks Commission submitted it late, and he felt the need to address the issue at this month’s meeting to keep the project moving along.
Miling explained that unless the board approves the funds early in the process, it may add five to six weeks to the project’s completion time. Gesink agreed that the cost may increase if the project goes into next year.
Tuinstra and Sennker cast the two “no” votes. Miling, Clerk Brian Boot, Treasurer Jim Martin and Trustees Josh Otto and Dan Weber voted in the affirmative.
PHOTO: Turning over the ceremonial first shovelfuls of dirt last weekend were Dorr Parks Commissioners (from left) Chris Gesink, Denice Lawrence and Al Weber.