Walk in the park

DPW in ‘full park mode’

Times Observer photo by Dave Ferry Baxter enjoys a leisurely stroll through Betts Park. On Tuesday, Warren’s Street Landscape Committee discussed a range of topics including prepping city parks for the summer, the proposed healing garden at Crescent Park, and a concrete picnic table at Gen. Joseph Warren Park.

A host of topics were before the City of Warren’s Street Landscape Committee on Tuesday.

Department of Public Works Director Mike Holtz told the committee that the bids for the proposed healing garden at Crescent Park came in approximately $160,000 over budget, which had originally been estimated in the area of $365,000.

Holtz said that there is need to dialogue with the state as well as start to develop a plan on where to procure the additional funds.

He noted that the project will only take six to eight weeks to complete so the committee is “not totally out of the woods for getting it finished in 2019.”

City Arborist Joe Reinke said that 15 trees have been removed this year, 12 of which were ash.

He said that DPW crews are in “full park mode right now” trying to get the parks ready for the summer season. That will include, among a host of things, extensive mulching in the coming days.

He also told the committee that a concrete picnic table similar to the one at the gazebo at Betts Park has been purchased for the bird viewing platform across from Gen. Joseph Warren Park.

While the original idea had been to install two, Reinke noted that the tables weight 980 pound each and that the architect of the bird viewing platform said no more than one of those tables should be placed there.

He also said that work – tree removal and mowing – at the cloverleaf off of US 6 near Betts Park requires “a week of good, dry weather.” Without those conditions, city crews will be unable to get equipment onto the site.

He said that about one-third of the mowing was completed last week and that the city will cut the rest when conditions allow. He said the state would be responsible for an additional mow at the end of June.

Committee members were encouraged to start taking note of properties they would like to recommend for a beautification award.

The committee took action to move an amended city tree ordinance to Warren City Council with its recommendation. Holtz said it would be before council at the June meeting.