Walker Place park gets extra $1 mill in Funding

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The Bossier City Council has approved an additional $1 million in funds for the Walker Place Park in south Bossier.

The project was initially slated to receive $1 million from the City of Bossier City. However, Bossier City public information officer Mark Natale said the additional funds were requested in order to make improvements to the project’s original design.

“The thought was to really do the park right,” Natale explained. “Essentially what the additional funds will do is widen the walking trail from eight feet to 10 feet, make the restrooms larger and install sufficient lighting.”

The park, which will be located on 15-acres of property just north of the CenturyLink Center, will now cost approximately $2.2 million and feature two ponds, an overlook area, a walking trail, restroom and other amenities. Natale said funds for the additional $1 million will come from the Riverboat Gaming Capital Project.

“The city just basically wanted to do it right. Not only for the folks who live down there, but for everyone in the city to enjoy,” Natale added. Both the park and an elevated walkway are part of a lawsuit settlement between the U.L. Coleman Company and the City of Bossier City. The company filed the lawsuit against the city in 2008 when the City Council denied a request from the real estate developer to grant access from the parkway to a planned apartment complex.

The parties reached a settlement agreement in December 2012. The initial agreement related to the park calls for the company to pay for the design of the park, with the city paying approximately $1 million for the construction of the park and also the construction cost of the elevated walkway.

The elevated walkway being designed will link the park to the west side of Arthur Teague Parkway and the Red River. The walkway will essentially be a convenience and safety feature for walkers and cyclists to safely cross the Arthur Teague Parkway without having to cross vehicular traffic.

The park is bounded on the south by the north parking lot of the Cent Center, the parkway on the west, Walker Place on the north and Cent Center Drive on the east.

Construction on the park and walkway has not started. Natale said they anticipate the project going out to bid in the coming months with construction to follow.

“When it’s all said and done, it should be a pretty nice addition to that area,” Natale said.