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A small crowd gathered at the future site of Chase Avenue Neighborhood Park Thursday for a brief presentation on the new park’s design.

The gathering was part of the Porterville Parks and Leisure Services Commission’s regular monthly meeting.

Representatives with Visalia-based Quad Knopf, the firm hired to prepare the park’s design and engineering, where on site to answer concerns raised by some of the area’s residents and to present the park’s preliminary concept plan.

Parks and Leisure Services Director Milt Stowe said that of the handful of people who attended, most of them were “ecstatic that they were going to put a park there.”

One resident asked about the park’s hours of operation and said she did not want the park to act as a gathering place for gang members.

Stowe said the park’s hours will be like those of all city-owned parks, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Asked how the city would enforce this, Stowe said, “With the kids and activities there, gang members are less likely to be there, plus, it’s a city park and police would probably step up patrol in the area.”

In November 2010, the city was awarded a $2.15 million grant from the California Department of Parks and Recreation for the park’s construction on 2.33 acres of land, located on Chase Avenue, just west of the Plano Street bridge.

The acquisition of the property cost the city approximately $217,000 while it’s design and construction have a price tag of about $1.93 million.

The park will include a walking trail, a multipurpose playing field, a playground, a water spray zone, a 20-space parking lot, a picnic pavilion and public restrooms. Michael Ratajski, senior project manager with Quad Knopf, said there will also be on-street parking available.

Stowe said he expects construction to begin in four to six months.

Contact Denise Madrid at 784-5000, Ext. 1047. Follow her on Twitter @DeniseMadrid_.

Source :

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