Rockford schools asks Corcoran to pay for baseball parking lot cost

The Corcoran City Council heard that the Rockford School District is asking the city to assist in paying for construction of a baseball field parking lot.

The Rockford School District is proposing to construct a varsity baseball field in Corcoran near the city park at County Rd. 50.

The cost to construct the field, and adjacent amenities, is about $991,000, of which Corcoran has committed $45,000. A grant was also secured to help pay for the project.

“ There is a strong need for a parking lot to be built as part of the project and the cost for  the parking lot is not included in the project budget,” city administrator Brad Martens wrote in his memo. “The Rockford School District has requested the city of Corcoran assist with paying for the construction of the parking lot as the field will also be able to be used by the City of Corcoran so there is a mutual benefit.”

Martens said the school district estimated the parking lot costs to be $188,000 for a paved lot with lighting, or $28,000 for a gravel lot with lighting.

He said the Parks and Trails Commission (an advisory commission to the city council) approved the following motions:

1. The Parks and Trails Commission support the construction of a baseball field on the school property contingent upon a long-term lease agreement approved between the city and the School District.

2. The Parks and Trails Commission support use of Park Dedication funds to pay for a parking lot amenity of a similar material of that existing in the surrounding parking areas.

3. The Parks and Trails Commission prefer a gravel lot and requests the Council allow the gravel lot through variance or change of code.

Martens said a variance would be required to allow a gravel parking lot since city code specifies paved lots except in rural commercial districts.

“Although the baseball field would be the only amenity in the immediate area in the near term, the lot would serve a larger athletic complex in the future,” Martens said. “The City Council should consider the level of involvement the City should take in the costs of the parking lot, the timing of the installation of the lot, funds to be used if any, and if any variance would be appropriate.”

He said funding could come from the park dedication fund.

Reached after the meeting, the administrator said the council made no commitments but directed him to pull together more concrete numbers. “It’s more just here’s what the numbers are,” he said. “We’ll be bringing that back at the (Nov. 14) meeting.”

Field construction is tentatively scheduled for next year, with play beginning in 2015.

In other action, the council:

AMENDED the housing density ordinance to add a provision for storm water runoff management areas in post development net density to be excluded from net density definition; and tabled the density ordinance approval.

HEARD that a bid package was put together for the proposed Maple Hill Community Center and is due back Nov. 13. Discussion is anticipated at the Nov. 14 council meeting. The city still has to do agreements and other documents before moving forward with the project.

REVIEWED the sanitary sewer and water services report, regarding hook-ups to the sewer and water system. Existing residential parcels would not be required to hook up. The city is hoping to adopt the policy in late November or early December.