By Dan Domsic
One of the last pieces of the Geist Annexation Agreement is falling into place with the Town of Fishers pursuing a new park at Cyntheanne Road and East 101st Street.
The Fishers Town Council took action at its April 15 meeting on the park, approving a $217,000 contract with Rundell Ernstberger Associates, LLC for architectural services.
Town Manager Scott Fadness said Rundell Ernstberger is responsible for the first phase of designing the park – defining the scope of the project.
Council Vice President Pete Peterson said the project was outlined in the Geist Annexation Agreement’s financial plan when the area came into Fishers’ fold, along with the new fire station at 101st Street and Florida Road.
Peterson said uses for the park were discussed by the Parks Advisory Committee and Parks and Recreation Dept. last year.
Peterson said the PAC came up with several ideas for the new park, which still does not have an official name, trying to avoid a new iteration of Ritchey Woods Nature Preserve or another ball park (a separate process was underway for another sports-related park).
“We wanted to look at it as a very usable park that wasn’t field sports specific,” Peterson, who was part of the PAC last year, said.
Some of the ideas that were thrown out there included an area for remote controlled airplanes, as well as a nature trail that featured suspension bridges and look-out points, according to Peterson.
Options are being considered for the park, but no concrete plans are set.
With the battle over Geist’s annexation long over, why has it taken this long for steps to be taken on the park?
Peterson and Fadness cite economic downturn and development slowing down in the park’s area.
“When the annexation was completed, it really kind of hit at the heart of the recession,” Peterson said.
With developers once again petitioning the council for zoning changes and other construction-related issues, Peterson said there is a resurgence in building, with much of the interest being in developing the east side of Fishers.
According to a council action form, construction is slated to start in November this year, with planning and design deadlines, as well as a four-week period of bidding a contract, scheduled throughout this spring, summer and fall.