Expansion of Little Turtle Waterway proposed

Last Updated on January 20, 2021 by Michelle Dials / Cass County Online

The need to move the Little Turtle Waterway’s signal bridge/gateway arch due to the stormwater project on Melbourne Avenue, along with possible development of housing at the Farmer’s Market Lot, has resulted in a new concept for an expanded greenspace north of Little Turtle Waterway near The Depot.

Preliminary concept drawings were first presented publicly at the January 20, 2021 meeting of the Logansport Parks and Recreation Board.

Parks administrator Jan Fawley says “the stars aligned with the need to move the gateway, the work being done on Melbourne Avenue, the idea of using some of the area for economic development, as well as working with both Bill Thompson and the Salvation Army to bring this area together.”

Kevin Burkett from the State Theatre Preservation Society and Mercedes Brugh from Little Turtle Waterway Corporation spoke in favor of the project.

Parks Board members expressed a desire for the mayor to provide some direction to help them focus their priorities, as they’re working on a five-year plan for Riverside Park and have been approached regarding the desire for a dog park and a skatepark as well, in addition to clubhouse renovations at Dykeman Park.

Fawley said the plan is to approach the Logansport Redevelopment Commission for funding from the city’s TIF funds for completion of the design process and cost estimates for the project.

Mike McCord, who also serves on the Redevelopment Commission, said that committee also needs input as to what projects are the most important to the community.

Fawley is also working with a group of students who have expressed interest in a skatepark and are working on a survey. She requested a transfer of $9500 from the playground equipment budget to engage Hunger Skate Parks to help plan the design. Bishop Park was mentioned as a possible location for the skate park.

The board opted to table the decision until after their upcoming board retreat where they hope to prioritize some of the proposed projects.

“We do not have a deep-pocket park budget,” said board member Lynne Ness. “Everything’s coming all at once of things that we need to do and want to do, but we have to have a clear cut plan of where we’re going and how we’re doing it.”

The drawings provided by the Logansport Parks and Recreation Department for the proposed greenspace downtown are below: