City looks to expand Chandler Park

08/11/2014 10:38 PM

08/11/2014 10:39 PM

When the city dedicated Clayton W. Chandler Park in 2004, there were plans for a second phase. But then came a string of high-profile park projects — Big League Dreams, Hawaiian Falls, Town Park and the Walnut Creek Linear Park, to name a few — that led parks officials off the trail.

A decade later, plans for the park named for the city manager are back in the mix.

“Now it’s time to do Phase 2,” Shelly Lanners, director of community services, said Monday after a brainstorming session with the City Council and park facilities board.

Talk touched on possible amenities for the park including tennis courts, a skate facility, a dog park, a children’s “sprayground” and more trails.

When one official invited the park’s namesake and 30-year city manager to weigh in, Chandler said, “I like everything.”

The park staff has been working with a consultant to help first develop a concept plan with cost estimates for the council to consider.

“That’s what we’re in the process of — fact-gathering to make a wish list,” Lanners said.

After the city agrees on a final plan, construction could begin in the fall 2015 and conclude a year later, she said.

The 13-acre park, formerly North Park, sits next to Brooks Wester Middle School at 1530 N. Walnut Creek Drive. New plans include plowing under a 7-acre baseball diamond left over from the old park to make room for improvements. In the first phase of improvements at Chandler Park, two multipurpose football fields, each with small baseball diamonds in two corners, were created.

Officials also have wanted to acquire some of the 16 acres owned by Chesapeake Energy adjacent to the north side of the park. But preliminary discussions over the years have not produced a price offer that the city says it can afford to pay.

Robert Cadwallader 817-390-7641

Twitter: @Kaddmann

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