Orland recently applied for state grant money to fund plans to renovate and improve the local recreation center, Lely Park and build a small playground near a subdivision that’s in the works.
Pete Carr, Orland city manager, said two different applications were submitted by the city – they are requesting $3.2 million to expand the Orland Recreation Center and make improvements to Lely Park and $200,000 to redevelop a quarter-acre lot to build a playground new the Community Housing Improvement Project Subdivision.
The city’s applications were submitted on Aug. 5 for Proposition 68 grant funds through the Statewide Park Development and Community Revitalization Program.
“Outdoor recreation is an important part of the quality of living and it’s important for individuals and families to get out and meet one another and recreate and exercise,” Carr said.
Orland Recreation Center
The renovations to the recreation center would include expanding the center – about doubling the size – which would allow them to expand the programs and include a space for community theater, Carr said.
He said this plan has been in the works for at least a couple of years.
“We had an architect a couple of years ago draw up the plans,” he said.
The City Council had approved it but they haven’t had the internal funds to complete it.
There is also pond that is located in the park – that is dry most of the year except when there is storm runoff. Carr said they hope to have include some infrastructure that would allow it to continue to function as storm drainage but would like to make it into a ball field.
The city has also be constructing a recreation trail and would use some of the funds to connect the trail from the Linwood subdivision – where they have also been constructing a playground – with Lely Park.
A new subdivision – Benson Estates – is being constructed through CHIP off of Newport Avenue.
Carr said, currently, there aren’t any parks or playgrounds within walking distance of the subdivision and the city owns a quarter-acre nearby, that currently has a storm drainage basin.
So the city submitted a grant application asking for $200,000 so they can build a playground and some infrastructure.
The minimum amount funded through the Prop. 68 grant is $200,000 with a maximum of up to $8.5 million and can be awarded for the creation of a new park or renovation of an existing park.
A number of public meetings took place leading up to the application being submitted, Carr said.
“We had a lot of input and interaction,” he said.
He said they took their suggestions into account and incorporated them into the plans.
“The City Council and Recreation Department are always interested in hearing what they like and what they want to see,” Carr said.
He said it can take two or three months to hear if they were selected to receive the funds.
“If they notify us by December, we would like to start work in the spring,” he said.
He said the projects would be planned to be complete in 2020 and 2021.