Grant funding reinstated for Yorkville park projects
State grants for the redevelopment of Bristol Bay and Riverfront parks in Yorkville have been reinstated recently after being suspended more than a year ago.
The Yorkville City Council unanimously approved extending the timelines for both projects now that grants funds are being released.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources first granted $400,000 for Riverfront Park redevelopment in May 2013 to the city’s Parks and Recreation Department.
The project includes a new playground, added parking, a fishing pier, and a canoe and kayak launch.
The city also received another grant from the state for $400,000 to redevelop Bristol Bay Park in April 2014. That project consists of added parking and a new skate park.
“That will become our main skate park area,” said Tim Evans, director of parks and recreation. “We do have a couple that feature skate parks, but not with the bowl.”
In March 2015, the state suspended the grants. On Aug. 10, city staff was notified by the state that the grant funding would resume.
To complete the redevelopment projects on time, city officials requested two one-year extensions. Grant funding for the Riverfront project was set to expire on Dec. 31, but city action allows for a new extension that will run through Dec. 31, 2017.
The grant for Bristol Bay Park was scheduled to expire on June 30, 2017. City approval provides the project a new timeline that will expire on June 30, 2018.
Evans said the redevelopment of the two parks will benefit residents throughout the city.
“It gives people more parks and recreation opportunities,” he said. “Another thing is it that it helps drive economic development.”
Evans said that on Oct. 1, the city needs volunteers to assist with installation of the new playground at Riverfront Park, 201 E. Hydraulic St. The park will have 37 different features, including swings, slides, and a rock wall, he said.
Evans emphasized that any help with the installation would save city money.
For more information on volunteering, contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 630-553-4357.