11/04/05 — Park plan will include new pond

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Park plan will include new pond

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on November 4, 2005 1:52 PM

Members of the Stoney Creek Park Development Committee met Thursday to discuss progress on the new park project, which now includes a pond thanks to community members' suggestions.

Sal Musarra, a consultant with the landscape architectural firm Kimley-Horn and Associates, addressed the committee and unveiled three preliminary drawings for the new park.

"We've taken the information from the public meeting and had some really good feedback," Musarra said.

Last month, committee members hosted an open forum at the Herman Park Center at which city officials and residents spoke to representatives from Kimley-Horn, the firm in charge of designing and installing new features at the park.

Some residents offered their opinions regarding specific features to include in the design, while others expressed concern over cost and maintenance issues.

One of the features suggested by neighbors at the meeting was a pond.

Musarra and his team presented one drawing that caught the eye of many of the committee members Thursday. This plan would bring an excavated lake into the park, a feature that he said would bring beauty to the neighborhood and help control flooding on the property.

City Manager Joe Huffman said a water feature would create buzz around the city and bring many people out to the new park.

"If you put in a lake, you won't believe how many people will be out there," Huffman said.

Now that the committee has shown interest in one of the drawings, Kimley-Horn staff will revise certain aspects of the plan that raised questions and clean up the preliminary drawing. The revised drawing will be presented to the City Council at its work session Monday.

Musarra told neighbors that while their suggestions and questions would influence the project, the firm would hold true to the vision statement provided by the committee. The drawings, he said, are a reflection of both community input and the vision statement.

The statement reads, "The Stoney Creek Park Development Committee has been charged by the City Council of the city of Goldsboro with transforming an area devastated by the tragic floods of Hurricane Floyd in 1999 into a community asset that can be enjoyed for many years to come. The Committee's vision is that of a passive outdoor recreation area that will provide opportunities for quality of life enhancement through education, conservation, recreation and natural beauty and that will include trails for walking, biking, opportunities for nature observation, gardening and natural resource conservation. The Committee feels that it is critical that the long term plans for this project include the entire Stoney Creek corridor which traverses Goldsboro and provides an endless variety of leisure possibilities. Collaborations with government, industry, non-profits, and the public will make this vision a reality."

Committee member Neil Bartlett said once the final plan is drawn and approved by the council, another public meeting would be planned to show residents the design. The committee will also pitch the design to community groups around Goldsboro.

Musarra said once these steps have been taken and construction officially begins, the new park should be ready to open in about two years.

"This is going to feel like an old Victorian walking park," he said.