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Lakeland News

Posted on: August 29, 2018

$500K grant awarded to Lakeland for new Park

Lakeland has been awarded a $500,000 grant by the state to start construction on the City’s first sports park at Memphis Arlington and Canada Roads.

Of the recent announcement, Mayor Bunker said today (8.29.18), “Lakeland’s first athletic park will enable us to accommodate our growing demand for additional adult and youth recreation programs.

Mayor Wyatt Bunker

“I would like to thank Senator Mark Norris as well as Lakeland’s Parks and Recreation Board for their assistance in securing the grant.  These are exciting times as we continue Moving Lakeland Forward.”

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and the Tennessee Department of Environment and conservation (TDEC) announced the grants totaling more than $15 million to help fund parks and recreation projects in Tennessee communities.

Lakeland was the only city in Shelby County to receive a LPRF (Local Park and Recreation Fund) grant.

“Easy access to parks, trails, walking paths and other recreational facilities can make a good community a great community,” said Gov. Haslam. “These grants provide the resources needed to help make Tennessee an even more desirable place to live, work and raise a family.”

TDEC will award approximately $13.5 million in LPRF grants to 51 communities as well as approximately $2.1 million in Recreational Trails Program (RTP) grants to 15 parks, communities and organizations across the state.  T.O. Fuller State Park was the only facility in Shelby County to receive RTP funds, with their grant valued at $200K.

Language about the park on the grant application:

Phase 1 of a Master Planned Sports Complex including a multi-use open turf field, gravel vehicular access road and parking with lighting, ADA-compliant parking stalls, ADA-compliant concrete sidewalk which connects to an ADA-compliant seating area, park maintenance building with gravel access drive and landscaping.

Kevin Rooney, director of the Lakeland Parks and Recreation Department, said the proposed work would be phase one of the Park which, when finished, will offer space and activities for young children to senior adults.

Kevin Rooney, director of the Parks and Recreation Department

The grant award is matched with cash and permanent land dedication from the City of Lakeland, he said.  The City has $760,000 cash from the Park Development Fund and the sale of a residential property in Lakeland.  “With the match we are hoping to have a budget of $1.26 million for the phase 1 build,” said Mr. Rooney.  He hopes to see activity at the 100-acre site as early as next summer

The LPRF grant program was established by the General Assembly in 1991 to provide local governments with funds to purchase land for parks, natural areas, greenways and recreational facilities. The funds also may be used for development of trails and projects in parks, natural areas and greenways. All LPRF grants require a 50 percent match by the recipient.

Grant recipients were selected through a scoring process with careful consideration given to the projects that met the selection criteria and expressed the greatest local recreation need.

Link to press release:–tdec-announce-more-than–15-million-for-local-parks-and-recreation.html

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