The Woodlands Township is moving ahead with plans for a $1.3 million renovation of Shadowbend Park, a project that includes upgrades to the park’s pool, play equipment and facilities.

The park, which opened in 1983 and is in the Village of Cochran’s Crossing, has become outdated and regularly needs repairs, according to a report compiled by the township. The report stated much of the facility’s pump and piping system has become corroded, walls are damaged by water and the facility does not meet mandated codes.

In addition, the park lacks sufficient restrooms and shower facilities, according to the township.

Nick Wolda, director of community relations for the township, said the township’s initial approval of the cost of the project is only the first step in the process.

“The board approved preliminary plans,” he said. “However, it doesn’t mean the project is officially underway.”

The project will be a 2014 budget item, which means it will need to be accounted for in the 2014 budget. The township board of directors will begin deliberating next fiscal year’s budget later this summer.

The township board had three options of renovations from which to choose, and it decided on the most costly. Last year, the township spent more than $1 million to renovate Sawmill Park, which was built in 1979, after initially budgeting $500,000 for the project. The township also budgeted $500,000 for the Shadowbend Park project.

“It’s clear that we don’t renovate a park and a pool for $500,000,” township director Mike Bass said.

The township will spend more than $400,000 just to bring the park up to code, such as installing ADA-required ramps, new electrical wiring and a phone system able to dial 9-1-1. More than $500,000 will be spent on additional amenities, such as more parking spaces, a jogging path and three fitness stations.

“We have an expectation for a set of amenities that didn’t exist 20 years ago,” Bass said.


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