Council awards $6.4 million contract for west Pearland sports park
By KRISTI NIX
After years of waiting and a scaled-back design proposal, plans for a west Pearland sports complex are finally moving forward. The Pearland City Council approved funding for the Shadow Creek Ranch Park via a $6.4 million contract awarded to the Crain Group. LLC of Pearland Monday, July 28.
"I am excited to see movement in this park development. Though not all amenities from the original design are included, I am happy we have funding to provide the amenities that we can,” Michelle Graham, Parks and Recreation Director said in a press release. “Beginning the first phase of construction is progress and a direct reflection of the support from City Council and the need that has been expressed by residents throughout the community,"
The sports park complex was approved by voters as part of the 2007 bond election. Original plans included eight lighted baseball and softball fields, a restroom and concession stand with a pavilion, a soccer field with a hike and bike trail around the fields and a lawn amphitheater.
After an earlier bid proposal came in over budget by nearly $5 million, the council voted to reject the measure at a meeting held May 19. The design was then scaled back to include only three softball fields, four baseball fields and a proactive soccer practice field. But, the park will now move forward without ballpark lighting, picnic tables, volleyball courts, a playground or an amphitheater as originally envisioned.
“I am disappointed that it has taken this long to get this park off the ground and I’m more so disappointed that we’re in a position right now where the city can’t pay for the entire park that voters approved,” City Councilmember Scott Sherman said. “I think it is disappointing to the residents. It is frustrating to me and I think it’s frustrating to a lot of folks in this room.
“A lot of it was the economy; some of it was decisions made by other councils, other councils that I was on. But, I feel that this is a city park and the city should fund it. And, to have to sit here and pull pieces out of a plan that was approved seven years ago, it’s not a good feeling to have right now,” Sherman said.
The park is scheduled to open in late 2015 and will be located north of Shadow Creek Parkway and west of Kingsley Drive.