TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV)– Over $600,000 in renovations are officially completed at one Terre Haute park.
The city held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the park on Saturday to celebrate their newest additions. The park added six new pickleball courts, a parking lot, a playground and a basketball court. There was also additional landscaping work done and improvements to the sidewalks.
Terre Haute Mayor Duke Bennett, on hand for Saturday’s ceremony, said the improvements cost $650,000 total, with $260,000 being paid by a grant from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
He said it started as a plan to add the pickleball courts– and quickly expanded.
“There’s a lot of people playing pickleball these days. Fastest growing sport in the United States and it’s growing very much here in Terre Haute. They were looking for an expansion so we applied for a grant with the DNR and received $260,000 to make this project happen,” he said. “We expanded a little bit beyond the pickleball courts. By putting in a new playground, new basketball courts, the parking lot, the restrooms, it turned into a much bigger investment.”
The Greater Terre Haute Pickleball Association played a large part in the project as they wanted to expand facilities available to them in the area. Marcia Ogle, the President of the organization, said they have been working on these upgrades since around 2017 or 2018, and to finally see them finished was exciting.
“It was amazing. When they first came out here to put the first shovel into the ground, we were so excited. People kept saying, ‘When is it going to come, when is it going to come,” and you just had to tell people to be patient,” she said.
The patience paid off– and now, Bennett said they are hoping to bring improvements to other parks in Terre Haute.
“There’s a couple we know,” he said of upcoming projects. “Herz-Rose Park is next on the list, up on Locust Street, it’s going to get a complete makeover beginning next year. We’re going to be able to do some major improvements to Fairbanks Park and the Deming Park Pool, we’re going to get an expansion and a remodel, if you will, of that pool.”
The current timeline for those puts completion somewhere in the next 12-18 months. Bennett said, after years of planning, he’s excited to see these renovations become a reality.
“Now we got some revenues, we got some money coming in so we’re able to do these investments, and we’ve been planning for the past couple of years, now we’re beginning to implement,” he said.