Big toy, big money at KRP

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Leathers and Associates of New York has helped with large playground structures around the United States for decades, including this one done in Minnesota earlier this year. The Keizer City Council on Monday approved hiring Leathers as the consultant for a community build play structure to be built at Keizer Rapids Park next year. (Submitted)

Leathers and Associates of New York has helped with large playground structures around the United States for decades, including this one done in Minnesota earlier this year. The Keizer City Council on Monday approved hiring Leathers as the consultant for a community build play structure to be built at Keizer Rapids Park next year. (Submitted)

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

The way Richard Walsh sees it, the small projects are done.

Now it’s time for a big one – as in $100,000-plus big.

Walsh, chair of the Keizer Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, gave an update during the Sept. 12 West Keizer Neighborhood Association meeting on the proposed community build play structure scheduled to be built at Keizer Rapids Park (KRP) next year.

“This has been an idea that’s been around for many years,” Walsh said. “We wanted to make sure we got the neighborhood parks done first. We did Ben Miller, Country Glen, Willamette Manor and Wallace House. Now, let’s do a bang-up job on a regional park we can really be proud of. So we came up with the idea of a community build play structure.”

The 2006 master plan for KRP – a park that came into being thanks in large part to Walsh, who lives right by the park – calls for two separate playgrounds. The Keizer City Council is currently amending the master plan, with one change being to switch to a single, larger play structure.

Councilors on Monday authorized city manager Chris Eppley to enter into an agreement with New York-based Leathers and Associates for construction of the play structure. The allocation from the Parks Improvement Fund (in the form of System Development Charges) is for up to $100,000 total on the project, with no more than $32,350 going to the consultant. The contract goes through Oct. 16, 2014.

Councilors had previously approved the $100,000 for the project in March.

A proposed timeline from Leathers and Associates calls for a design day on Oct. 29, with a final materials list to be submitted by Dec. 10. An open house incorporating the final design is scheduled for March 4. An organization day and volunteer recruitment is scheduled for mid-July. The play structure itself would be built next Sept. 17 to 21.


To read the complete article and other news from around the Keizer area, pick up a copy of the September 20 print edition of Keizertimes, available at stores all around the area. To subscribe to the print edition for just $25 a year, click on the ‘Subscribe Today’ link at the top of the page, call 503-390-1051 or visit our office at 142 Chemawa Road North in Keizer.

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