Public asked to give feedback on design concepts, usage of parks

Published 1:20 pm Monday, January 8, 2018

As plans of possible renovations continue to formulate for two parks in the City of Elizabethton, residents can make their voices heard on the potential plans.
Students from Appalachian State University recently released a visual preference survey to allow individuals to voice their opinions on improvements for Covered Bridge and Edwards Island parks.
Residents can visit and search for Parks and Recreation under the “Department” header at the top of the page. The site allows residents direct access to the survey.
Mike Mains, Parks & Rec director, stated the survey will be open until Tuesday, Jan. 30, to allow all information to be finalized.
During the month of December, city leaders were presented two ideas from Appalachian State University engineering students for potential improvements at Edwards Island and Covered Bridge Park. The purpose of the presentations, according to Mains, was to assist the city in creating a master plan for development of both areas. Both concepts will be brought into discussions with city leaders as they look to implement the best resources possible.
“That’s why this survey is available,” Mains said. “We want to make sure the community provides their feedback. It’ll be important for us to see the popularity and usage of the park.”
Students arrived on site late August and toured the area with city officials and representatives from the Elizabethton IDEAS Group to come up with a park feasibility study and master plan for improvements.
Different intangibles will go into the development of the study, according to Mains. The scope of services provided by the university includes:
• Research and Development of a Design and Action Plan for the Project
• Provide Beautification of Both Parks
• Promote the History of Natural Resources of the City of Elizabethton
• Provide Educational Opportunities
• Have Recreational Programs and Events and Promote Scenic Aspects of Both Parks
• Identify Funding Sources
• Develop Cost Effective Measures That Would Lower Burden of Maintenance Expenses
• Reduce Overall Liability Concerns
“Now with the ideas provided by the Appalachian State students, this survey is really our next step,” Mains said. “With the community input, we can take that, along with the ideas already presented, and try to come up with the best possible plan that ensures growth and longevity of both parks.”
One of the key components of the goal, according to Mains, is to have a plan in place that will help showcase the historic Covered Bridge located downtown.

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