Soldotna youth may ollie up by month end

Posted: Wednesday, May 10, 2006

With snow falling as recently as Sunday, young people likely are not in too much of a hurry to try stunts on the ramps at the Soldotna Skateboard Park, but the park could be open before the end of the month.

At its meeting tonight, the city council is scheduled to consider a plan put together by city administration to realign the ramp equipment, making skaters more visible to passersby on Marydale Avenue.

Input received by the city indicates that could alleviate some of the problems at the popular recreation facility, according to City Manager Tom Boedeker.

City officials ordered the park closed last September due to continuing vandalism and reports of drug abuse there.

Boedeker said another proposal in the plan to mitigate trouble is asking owners of neighboring property for permission to thin some trees on their land, further enhancing visibility at the park.

If the council approves, the city will contract with a crane operator to come in and lift ramp equipment and with a paving firm to do some asphalt work that ramp relocation will necessitate.

“Our target will be to get (the park) open as soon as possible,” Boedeker said.

The council also will conduct the first of two public hearings on the city’s proposed budget for the coming fiscal year, which runs from July 1 to June 30, 2007.

The proposed operating budget is $10 million, but Boedeker said earlier that total includes $1.5 million, which is being transferred to capital and $600,000 transferred to other funds.

“Basically, we have an operating budget of $8 million,” he said.

Additionally, the council will consider a resolution extending out-of-city water and sewer service to two lots being developed along the Kenai Spur Highway where Eagle City Trailer Park once stood.

New owners of the property are developing mini retail strip malls and some storage facilities on the land, according to Boedeker.

Water and sewer were previously extended to much of the land, but not to two lots right on the highway.

The Soldotna Chamber of Commerce is on the agenda seeking the council’s support of a land purchase by the Exxon Valdez Trustee Council of a parcel between the Soldotna Visitors Center and Centennial Park.

The chamber previously asked the council to purchase land adjacent to the visitors center so the business organization can build a new center with larger restrooms and added parking for tourists.

The council approved allocating funding for that purchase, but has not yet given the OK to the actual purchase.

The council meeting begins at 6:30 tonight in Soldotna City Hall.

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