Bonney Lake may get some new parks in land already owned by the city, thanks to an idea from Mayor Neil Johnson to build a downtown civic center and transform the Reed and Moriarty properties into parks, trails, BMX courses and ball fields at the tune of $15.8 million.
“We already own this property… so this plan is more cost-efficient for the city,” said Johnson. “Our goal with this was to figure out how to cover all our bases.”
Analyzing property the city already owns for park repurposing is a shift away from plans for , which the city seems to have quietly shelved. The YMCA is too expensive, Johnson reasoned, and is something the city could revisit in the future if more money for park expansion materializes.
Fifteen projects were identified that the city can start planning for now – and what citizens could pay for if metropolitan parks bond makes the ballot in 2013. These plans aren’t finalized, but Bonney Lake has laid the groundwork for the public to consider.
Here’s a breakdown of Mayor Johnson’s Preferred Parks Plan:
Mayor Johnson envisions a Bonney Lake pavilion in the heart of downtown, near the new justice center. The city already owns multiple parcels in the area so land acquisition won’t be an issue. The plan would cost the city approximately $2.5 million.
Johnson drew inspiration from the Puyallup’s Pioneer Park, with a center that could act as the community gathering hub and cultural center of Bonney Lake – until a larger civic center could be built in the future.
“If we build a pavilion right downtown, we could have concerts, art and history. It would be a great kickoff to a civic center campus, which is about 10 to 15 years down the road,” said Johnson. “If we could get something there now it will get citizens motivated to speed up the process and there could be something more there sooner.”
REED PROPERTY PARK
The biggest dollar item on the preferred parks plan is the transformation of the Reed Property, 20 acres of land owned by the city just outside its limits on Connells Prairie Road, past the historical marker.
Plans for a complex on the property call for playgrounds, park area and six sports fields would cost approximately $6.5 million. This would include concession stands, dugouts, bleachers and picnic shelters.
The Moriarty Property, adjacent to Allan Yorke Park, could be recreated into a multi-purpose outdoor center with amphitheater, playground, sports courts and a BMX facility.
Bonney Lake’s old city hall on Locust Avenue will one day link up to the Moriarty property park, which will create a green belt of parks in the middle of the city, ending at the Allan Yorke boat launch.
The deed for the old city hall says that it must be repurposed into park property once it’s vacant, said Johnson. Once all city employees are moved from that building, more park land will be available for another ball field, parking or passive use picnic area.
The preferred park plan calls for $2 million in trails – to be located along Fennel Creek and an extension on Garden Meadows. Johnson said there could be easy walking trails blended into plans for the Moriarty, city hall and Reed properties as well, which are easy to include once the park development begins.
COST BREAKDOWNTrail on WSDOT, "City Hall" and Cimmer Parcels (includes trailhead)
$2 MILLIONPavilion in Downtown Civic Center $2.5 MILLION Sport complex (6 fields) (REED PROPERTY) $6.5 MILLION Maintenance shed REED PROPERTY $200,000 Restrooms + concession stand REED PROPERTY $200,000 Sport Courts REED PROPERTY $400,000 Playground(s) REED PROPERTY $100,000 Picnic shelters, dugouts, bleachers REED PROPERTY $500,000 Trail extension to Garden Meadows $1 MILLION Multi-purpose playfield (Moriarty) $500,000 BMX Facility (Moriarty) $100,000 Amphitheater (Moriarty) $500,000 Sport Courts (Moriarty) $400,000 Playground (Moriarty) $100,000 Parking lot, storm facility, picnic shelters, storage shed (Moriarty) $800,000
$15.8 MILLIONEstimated Tax Levy $0.57/$1,000 AV Estimated Annual Tax on $215,506 Home $122.58
The Bonney Lake Council could begin studying formal plans for the development of a parks bond at the end of August or early September. Johnson said that information on the Parks Plan will be available for the public to check out during Bonney Lake Days at the city-run booth and plans for a follow-up park summit are not far away. For the next , Johnson envisions a series of open-house meetings, where the public has plenty of opportunity to weigh in on the future of parks in Bonney Lake.
If the council decides to ask voters to form a Metropolitan Park District, the city will be able to ask voters for a park tax levy. If all goes according to plan, the estimated affect on a homeowner would be $0.57 per $1,000 of the assessed home value – $122.58 per year on a $215,500 home.