Where current parks projects stand before Mayor-Elect Terry takes office

Parks board gives project updates
Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 6:45 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - A lot of parks projects are set to roll over into Mayor Elect Stephanie Terry’s administration.

The pickleball courts at Wesselman Woods, the ‘Light Our Parks’ initiative, and other big projects will be left for the next Mayor to continue with.

“I’m encouraged, and I’m excited to help her administration be successful on the outside,” Deputy Mayor and Interim Parks Director Steve Schaefer said.

At the latest parks board meeting, Schaefer ran down the latest on current and future projects. Schaefer says since the five-year master plan was adopted, a lot has happened, and they’re ready to make the transition in January.

“So next year, you’re going to see a lot of improvements and all of these things, well they didn’t just happen. It took planning, and a lot of time and effort, so it’ll be nice to see those things happen,” Schaefer said.

In Wesselman Woods, the pickleball courts have a couple more steps left. The parking lots still need to be paved, and the topcoat needs to be laid on the courts.

Schaefer says due to temperatures, that final touch will need to most likely wait until the spring of 2024.

He says while the project has been controversial to those in desire of green space, he thinks the city has been able to make up for the lost space in other parts of the park.

“While yes, we may take up a little bit of space next to existing facilities, we’re also creating huge areas for expansion of green space,” Schaefer said.

Looking to other projects, the Garvin Park Master Plan is awaiting adoption by the parks board, which would give the park a playground, a basketball court and a shelter.

New bleachers are coming to multiple city parks such as Tepe Park and Stockwell Park.

A new shelter (gazebo) will be at Sunset Park West in January.

New playground equipment at Sheridan Park is also in the works, and the Goebel Soccer Complex is getting more lighting.

In addition to all of this, the 2024 Capital Projects include Phase 1 of the HVAC system replacement at Swonder Ice Arena, a rebuild of the Howell Park Boardwalk, and the ‘Light Our Parks’ initiative, which is aimed at improving security and lighting at multiple city parks.