Lansing Aldermen updated on park grant

Wil Petty

May 15, 2014

In the regularly scheduled meeting of the Lansing Board of Aldermen, the members were updated on the grant status of the Lansing Creeper Trail park expansion.

Alderman Michelle Slaton led the discussion with the Board providing an update on the grant as well as the park’s potential future.

“One of the things we have been concerned about is how do we fulfill the grant,” Slaton said. “Just so everybody’s clear and there’s no confusion, we have to provide three public recreational activities in the grant.”

Slaton said that could include fishing, hiking mountain biking or other activities which would fulfill grant requirements. Three recreational facilities have to be within the grounds.

“Something we can control is how much we spend on the recreational features that go into the park,” she said. “The design company is doing the analysis of the land and what we can put on the land. They only really did the analysis on the Thompson property, and one of the things they said is that it would not be suitable for Frisbee© golf.”

An additional suggestion was having a zip line through the park, but the town would have to decide if they would want a passive park or an active park.

“An active park with a zip line, you can do something where you approach a for-profit company and they will put in the infrastructure, and you can do a long-term lease with them where they could be open one day a week to do a zip line and we could do that,” Slaton said. “That was just something that I thought was interesting that we have not discussed in our meetings (of the Board of Aldermen).”

Slaton said the town would need to decide whether or not an active park would be the direction it would want to go.

Alderman Dylan Lightfoot then asked if there was a list of criteria or requirements available to fulfill the three public recreational activities.

“For instance, could a walking trail be one, would a playground be one, how is that fulfilled?” he asked.

Slaton said the walking trail would meet one of the three public recreational activity criteria.

“That was something where (developers) made the suggestion that we might want to look into some of the inexpensive options to meet the criteria,” she said.

Lansing Mayor George Rembert said the discussion of what options the park should have depends on how much money the town raises and how much money is matched by the state.

“The key is how much money do we have by the time we purchase the land,” he said. “It is a line item purchase and we can purchase the Thompson property whenever we want to and they will give us half of that money.”

Lightfoot said he believed the land acquisition is the most important part of the park’s expansion.

“If we have fishing, camping sites and hiking trails, then we have met the three supported activities criteria right there without spending much money on additional construction,” he said. “If we acquire the property now, we can do other things later.”

Lightfoot then emphasized the importance of going ahead and moving in on the property.

“If we don’t buy the property now and someone blows into town, buys 10 acres of land and puts some hideous condos on it, we can’t buy it later,” he said.

Changing banks

During the meeting, the Board unanimously approved changing banks from First Citizen’s to LifeStore.

Among the reasons for moving, the Board noted LifeStore has a location in Warrensville that is more accessible for the Board.

Rembert also said Town Clerk Marcie Little was for the change, because LifeStore’s Mt. Jefferson location holds later hours, which would help get deposits to the bank after the workday.

“The checking account and the safety deposit boxes will move as well to whichever branch (of LifeStore) we choose,” he said.

Rembert also said originally, the reason Lansing used First Citizen’s was because they previously had a Lansing location.

New office hours

Effective immediately, the Lansing Board of Aldermen unanimously approved changing the days and hours Lansing’s town hall will be open.

The town hall hours will now be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Previously, the hours were the same, but on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Wil Petty can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @WilPetty.