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4-22-15 Minutes

Recreation and Parks Board
4-22-15 Minutes


RECREATION AND PARKS BOARD:                                                                        LOWER ALLEN TOWNSHIP

REGULAR MEETING                                                                                                                             APRIL 22, 2015

The following were in ATTENDANCE:

BOARD MEMBERS                                       TOWNSHIP PERSONNEL
Greg Mahon, Chairman                                Donna Paul, Township Representative
Susan Parry, Vice Chairman                        Julie Echterling, Recording Secretary
Richard Grove, Secretary
Bob Pelles
Scott Duncanson
James Kaiser
Carolyn Kohr

Mr. Mahon called the April 22, 2015 Regular Meeting of the Recreation and Parks Board to order at 7:04 pm.

Ms. PARRY made a motion to approve the minutes from the March 25, 2015 meeting. Mr. GROVE seconded the motion. Motion carried 7-0.

Mr. Joshua Smith, Charter Homes, stated he was here to discuss the sketch plan and obtain input from the Board. He showed the Board the location of the new phase of Arcona on the map. The following points were discussed:

• Three roundabouts and a new road (Cona Road) will be built. The building of the Cona Road and one roundabout will be part of this phase.
• There will be a trail system including a fitness trail. Some of the planned sidewalks for the development will be part of the trail system. This trail system will be open to the public. Parking for the trail is planned for downtown.
• The farmhouse will remain for now and be evaluated at later date.
• The construction in this phase will contain the following:
       o 282 Apartments with a pool and clubhouse.
       o 52 Townhouses
       o 32 Mixed use residential buildings
• 17 acres of open space are in the sketch plan.
• Terra Park will be constructed for Arcona resident use only and will be maintained by the Homeowner’s Association. The park will include a fire pit area similar to Meridian. He stated the park would include mounted earth/rocks and open space for the kids to play.
• The plans for stormwater were discussed including a large regional basin and natural wetlands. He stated the stormwater plans haven’t been finalized.
• He stated pending approvals, initial construction should be started within a year. He isn’t sure when the full trail will be built out.

The following were the suggestions/input from the Board that was shared during Mr. Smith’s presentation:

• More active recreation versus passive recreation.
• Dedicated active park area for public use like the other developments in the Township. Mr. Grove stated recreation as defined by the Township is open to the public.
• Would like to see the trails started sooner versus later.
• Creative/innovative ideas including rain gardens and plantings were suggested to be incorporated into their stormwater management plan.
• Safety concerns were expressed for crossing Arcona Road for accessing the park/trail.
• Safety concerns with emergency response for two roads (Cona and Arcona Road).
• Suggested more fire pits based on use observed at Meridian.
• Suggested tot lots and basketball court for additional recreation.
• Consider a fire hall and potential police substation.
• Concern about the bridge over the railroad was discussed.

The Board thanked Mr. Smith for his presentation. Mr. Smith stated he would take their input back to Charter as they prepare to submit the preliminary plan in May.

Pete’s Field
There were no public comments. Mrs. Paul stated the fencing would be replaced soon.

Commissioner Black was not present at the meeting and there was no liaison report.

Mrs. Paul discussed the following activities from her monthly memo:
       • The Township was not chosen for the grant for recycling containers.
       • Sports in full swing at Township parks.

Mrs. Paul highlighted the following tasks that were completed in March:
       • Ball field maintenance and parks clean-up.
       • New black padded chairs were delivered during the month. The new chairs will replace the old chairs in the upper level of the Barn.
       • Parks picnic table repairs and staining.
       • Playground equipment and bench repairs.

Gardeners Gathering
Ms. Parry asked everyone to meet at the Barn at 9 am. Mr. Mahon stated he could help with setup. Ms. Parry will bring the projector and an extension cord. She spoke about how the speaker wanted the room setup. Ms. Parry stated the rain garden is still a pond and she doesn’t want to plant anything new until the issue is fixed. Mr. Flint will do research on ways to fix the water retention problem. Ms. Parry stated the rain garden workshop will discuss design and some lessons learned from the rain garden. It will also include a cleanup of the garden. Mrs. Paul has the tickets for the event. Discussion ensued.

Mrs. Paul stated the following prizes are for the event and whom they were provided by:
       • $25 gift card – BJ’s
       • Basket – Black’s Landscaping
       • Hanging basket – Stauffers of Kissel Hill
       • Gift – Jeffrey’s Flower Shop
       • Various gifts – Royers/Highland Gardens – Ms. Parry was going to pick them up.

Easter Egg Hunt
Mrs. Paul stated the event was well attended and went well considering the snow and cold. She thought the Easter bunny did a good job this year. Discussion ensued. New totes with wheels were suggested for next year for transporting and storing the eggs.

Mr. Mahon spoke about the May and June planned park tours.

The Board discussed the presentation by Charter Homes. The consensus of the Board was:
       • Strongly support the trail system with public access and would like to see it sooner versus later. Ensure the trails are always available to the public.
       • Recreation for the resident is preferred versus paying a recreation fee.
       • Adequate active recreation facilities for public use is suggested including play structures, active recreation facilities and grass areas.
       • The Board supported Mr. Flint’s comment about the location of the pedestrian bridge and the easements.

Mr. Mahon stated he is going to call Mr. Flint. He will send a letter to Mr. Flint and Mr. Vernau with the Board’s suggestions and comments.

The Regular Meeting of the Recreation and Parks Board adjourned at 8:38 pm.

Next meeting is Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 6:00 pm – Park Tours