Final concept plans for a new park at the former McCormick Middle School property were approved Tuesday by Wellington village council.
Eric Brubeck, a park designer from North Royalton who has overseen plans from the outset, presented a full overhead design as well as 3-D before-and-after photos of specific areas on the 4.6-acre site.
Early estimates for the cost of the project come in at just under $1.7 million, but Brubeck said that number could come down before actual construction begins.
“We want to have a very ceremonial entrance way,” he said. “There will be a decorative iron archway that could possibly be a place where we put the park’s name. We’ve talked about using brick and sandstone from the old school to incorporate into the pillars of the entrance, to kind of bring some of the old into the new.”
Council’s vote sends the design to the village planning commission. If approved there, it will be sent back to council for a final vote.
While no timeline for construction has been revealed, a dedication and naming ceremony at the site is planned for June 10 during a Wellington High School all-years alumni reunion.
Those wishing to participate in a naming contest for the park can submit ideas to mayor Hans Schneider at firstname.lastname@example.org.
An itemized list of park amenities provided by Brubeck includes 20,000 square feet of concrete walkways, 60 light posts, 31 benches, and seven flag poles.
A prospective one-third-mile jogging path wraps around the park’s outer edges with a life-size Spirit of ‘76 monument sitting in the southwest corner.
A large fountain sits on the west end toward South Main Street and an evergreen tree is shown at the park’s epicenter.
On the east end, a bandstand with restrooms and drinking fountains is envisioned. That piece of the plan was the idea of Fred Alspach, who died last summer as the result of a scooter crash.
To honor his memory, Alspach remains the named chair of the park planning committee.
“This committee did not shut anyone or any ideas out,” said Schneider. “Fred Alspach will continue to be our chair and we’ll never forget his contributions to this project. At his last meeting, he talked about that bandstand a lot. Since then, so many people have reached out to see how they can contribute to that idea he had. I’m proud to have worked with these good people and be a part of this committee.”
Council members Guy Wells and Helen Dronsfield had some reservations about a loss of parking spaces on Dickson and Carpenter Streets. Sixty spaces currently fill those areas but plans cut them down to 48.
Schneider said parking overflow during public events has been mitigated in the past by a large public lot on Courtland Street behind village hall.
No plan to pay for the park has been established but the mayor said grant funding will be sought.
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.