Parks and Recreation Enhancement Plan ranks city parks on their need for repairs

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FARMINGTON — The Aztec City Commission will discuss the proposed Parks and Recreation Enhancement Plan during a work session at 5 p.m. Tuesday.

City manager Joshua Ray said the plan, which is updated every few years, will help the city plan its budget for fiscal years 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Over the past six years, Ray said, the city has spent about $1.2 million on capital projects to enhance city parks.

"Parks are vital for a small community," he said.

The plan ranks parks on their need for repairs. The top park on the list is Cap Walls Park. The Youth Conservation Corps is set to work on improving the park this summer.

The plan includes $688,000 to more than $1.15 million in projects to enhance the city's 16 parks, as well as the medians, street corridors and trails. Some of the more expensive parks projects include $100,000 for riverbank stabilization at Riverside Park and $356,000 for parking lot improvements north and south of the Hartman Park baseball fields.

The plan also calls for adding a dog park at Tiger Park. Ray said the location was previously a well site, but the well has been capped and enclosed, so the area could be transformed into a dog park.

The proposed dog park and agility equipment would cost about $30,500, including $16,000 for fencing and $14,500 for agility equipment and accessories like benches.

Wilann Thomas, the supervisor of tourism and marketing at the Aztec Visitors Center, said the park would be an attraction for tourists traveling with pets.

"It would be very beneficial to be able to send them to a specific park," she said, adding the park would provide an off-leash area for dogs.

The parks plan also proposes expanding the skateboard park at Hartman Park, which is estimated to cost $30,000.

Thomas said the city's parks are important because they improve residents' quality of life and provide venues for many events.

She highlighted Minium Park as a popular family destination that was improved by city enhancements a few years ago. In 2012, the city opened a splash pad at the park, which is near the visitor center and city offices.

"All summer long, I have my door open, so I can hear the kids playing, laughing and screaming," she said.

Hannah Grover covers Aztec and Bloomfield, as well as general news, for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564.4652.

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