Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Park Projects Get Boost from Illinois, U.S

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Park Projects Get Boost from Illinois, U.S

Article excerpt

People in Collinsville, Freeburg and the Dupo area in the Metro East will be able to enjoy new and improved parks as a result of recent state and federal grants.

Those communities are among 69 recipients of a total of more than $11.7 million in grants to buy and improve park lands in Illinois. The grants were announced recently by Gov. Jim Edgar.

"Local parks are focal points of communities," Edgar said in a statement. "Local communities will share half the cost of the projects, which brings the total investment in outdoor protection and enjoyment (in Illinois) to more than $23.4 million."

Fifteen park acquisition projects and 54 park improvement projects in the state will be funded in part by $10.8 million in state Open Space Land Acquisition and Development grants and by $860,000 in federal Land and Water Conservation Fund grants, the governor said.

The grants are administered in Illinois by the state Department of Conservation, and they carry a stipulation that the money must be used for parks or other outdoor recreation projects.

The Collinsville Area Recreation District was awarded $91,300 in a state grant to help develop the new Schnucks Memorial Park on 9 1/2 acres behind the Schnucks store off Belt Line Road.

The project includes development of playgrounds, jogging and walking trails, an observation-fishing deck, picnic areas and a natural interpretation area. Mark Badasch, executive director of the Area Recreation District, said paperwork on the project was being completed and construction is expected to start late this summer or early in the fall.

Badasch said the park would be developed for use by the end of 1996. When the project is completed, the district will get the matching grant from the state, he said.

Fishing will be available at three ponds on the park property, which was donated by Schnucks Markets, he said. …

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