Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney unveiled that the highly-anticipated park in Frisco will be available this year according to a Dallas Morning News article from February 23. They say,
“Frisco officials purchased the property for Grand Park in 2005. But development was delayed for years by the slow cleanup of the former Exide Technologies battery recycling plant.
Although the Exide plant closed about a decade ago, the city received full control of the property for the first time in October. Cheney said the cleanup could take between five to seven years to complete.
“We are awaiting our final TCEQ [Texas Commission on Environmental Quality] permit, which we opted to have within the next few months,” Cheney said. ”That would give us the right to start moving forward on the cleanup process.”
The city and Exide reached an agreement in 2012 that stated the recycling plant would close its doors and clean up the contamination. In exchange, the city would purchase 90 acres of the surrounding property for $45 million. But the property mostly looked the same after the demolition, putting the cleanup process in the city’s hands.”
To the excitement of Frisco residents and officials, both are brainstorming as to what the park will be and what it will have according to a Star Local Media article from February 12 which reports,
“Building an arboretum inside Grand Park was suggested by several residents during the open discussion. One idea was having an area of the park dedicated to a butterfly habitat, and other features suggested by residents were a child-oriented petting zoo, an outdoor amphitheater large enough for acts such as the Dallas Symphony to perform and attract residents, features honoring Frisco’s past and railroad heritage, and a safe place of cyclists to ride to get away from busy Frisco roadways.
More citizen input included ideas such as benches to allow walkers to rest, public art displays and even a treehouse feature for children to enjoy. Cheney added that the vision for Grand Park is that it features natural play areas for children, not only your typical playground equipment.
Other ideas that Cheney mentioned and asked for input on were thoughts on a crystal lagoon, or whether or not the park should feature commercial uses such as restaurants or a boardwalk with businesses that could become sources of income for the park.
Other ideas from residents in attendance for Grand Park features included horseback rentals, a man-made mountain for hiking, and 5K and half-marathon running trails to attract race events. Cheney added that even though Grand Park will no longer feature a man-made lake as once envisioned, he would like to see some type of water feature included in the planning.”
Currently, the budget allocated for the Grand Park is $20.5 million. However, the budget does not include the maintenance of the park yet.