Despite the presence of the Butler's garter snake, nearly $400,000 worth of improvements to Abendschein Park, 999 E. Drexel Ave., will get under way later this spring.
As part of first and second phases of the park's master plan, the city will update the parking lot and pedestrian pathways, storm sewer and detention pond, skate park, open-air shelter, play structure area and soccer fields on the east side of the park.
The city received word Monday from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources that the area is designated at a "tier 2" snake habitat, which means it does not have significant conservation value and will not affect planned improvements. The DNR's designation follows the Common Council's April 6 conditional approval of four separate contracts for the projects.
City Engineer Wayne St. John said work should begin in May, and improvements should be completed by the end of summer. Other improvements scheduled for 2010 and beyond include a concession building with restrooms, water, sanitary sewer and electrical service; stream bank stabilization; a pedestrian bridge over the creek; and further expansion of the pedestrian pathway network.
Improvements will be funded with impact fees from developers and capital improvement project dollars.
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