SPRINGDALE -- Aldermen approved designing of a trail connecting the Jones Center to the area around the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks.
Aldermen approved Tuesday allowing the mayor and city clerk to enter into a contract with Garver, an engineering firm, for design services for the trail.
Dean's Trail would begin at the center, cross through an industrial area, go through some neighborhoods surrounding Parson Hills Elementary School, continue south to an tunnel under Don Tyson Parkway and end at or around the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, according to meeting documents.
Patsy Christie, city director of planning, said in December the trail would be named for Dean Lagrone, a member of the city's Trails Task Force. Lagrone put a lot of work into the project, she said.
It's important to have trails in the city, because it's an amenity that could attract people and businesses to the area, said Brad Baldwin, city engineering director. Growth in population and number of businesses can help improve the city's economy.
The city will pay Garver no more than $297,600 for designing the trail. In December, Christie said her best guess was the trail would cost $4.5 million to $5 million to construct. She also said the mayor sets aside $1 million from sales tax revenue each year for trails, and officials want to apply for grants.
Aldermen voted Dec. 9 against the design services, said Alderman Jim Reed before the meeting. Reed was out of state on Tuesday and didn't attend the meeting.
Reed said he voted against the resolution in December because he thought it was too soon to spend money on the project. He said he has since changed his mind because he's learned there's a possibility people may invest in the trail.
Alderwoman Kathy Jaycox said she brought the resolution back because she was absent from the meeting in December. She said during the meeting the city needs designs for the trail to attract funding.
"Without this kind of a resolution, we could put our trails at risk," she said.
City officials made minor changes to the contract with Garver before it went back to City Council, Baldwin said. He said he provided commentary to compare the contract to other recent contracts. The changes also made costs and numbers easier to understand.
"Essentially, it's the same contract," he said.
Garver and city officials will start working on the design within the next couple weeks and hope to have them finished in a few months, Christie said Tuesday. Public sessions will also be part of the design process, so officials can learn what residents want from the trail. It could be a few years before construction begins.
NW News on 01/14/2015
Print Headline: Garver To Design Trail