Sturgis Aquatics Committee to host listening meetings

The Sturgis Aquatics Committee’s proposal calls for building a four-acre lake with beach, water slides, an aquatics obstacle course, pickleball courts, volleyball courts, a walking path, a memorial splash pad and mini golf off Ball Park Road in Sturgis.

STURGIS — The public is invited to attend an open house from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday in the gym at the Sturgis Community Center to learn more about the Sturgis Lakeside Aquatics Park.

There will be three sessions available during this time from 1-3 p.m., 4-6 p.m. or 7-9 p.m. Each session will have the same information available.

Consultants working on the Sturgis Lakeside Aquatics Park will be on hand at all the sessions on Monday to share several potential park layout designs along with an assortment of amenities that could be provided within the park.  The consultants will also provide costs for all options.

The open house will continue from 1-5 p.m. on Tuesday, at the community center.

Organizers say public feedback is essential for this project to be successful.

The public is invited to stop by to ask questions, share ideas, and submit their feedback for park amenities, said Allison Carter, chairman of the aquatics committee.  The generated feedback will be taken into consideration when the final presentations are prepared and presented to the Sturgis City Council later this fall, she said.

The committee’s preliminary proposal calls for building a four-acre lake with beach, water slides, an aquatics obstacle course, pickleball courts, volleyball courts, a walking path, a memorial splash pad and mini golf. It also would include restrooms, concessions and shade structures. The preliminary price tag is about $3.5 million. But the price will be dependent on what design and amenities are chosen.

Funding for the project would come from the sale of land at the Sturgis Fairgrounds on Ball Park Road. The city also would establish a TIF (Tax Increment Finance) district which would fund nearly $2 million of the project. Another $365,000 would come from grants, and community fundraising.

The park would be gated and admission charged for use of facilities. The committee says the potential revenue could add up to about $150,000 a year. Annual expenses at the park are estimated to be about the same, making the project revenue neutral.

The park would be located between the baseball fields on the south and the softball fields on the north, essentially over the area where the Sturgis flat track racetrack is now.

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