Thursday, March 19, 2009

Coweta County and the City of Grantville to Dedicate Renovated Ballpark

Dedication of the newly renovated Grantville Ballpark will be Saturday, March 21, 2009 at 9:45 am. The approximately $2 million renovation was funded by Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) and, not only resulted in a beautiful, new 4- field ball park for South Coweta County, but also provided some of the infrastructure needed for the soon to be built Grantville branch of the Coweta County Public Library System

The day will begin with a parade of the South Coweta Baseball Association teams at 9 am beginning at Grantville City Hall and ending at the newly renovated ballpark on Colley Street. After cutting the ribbon to allow everyone in, a short dedication program will be held on the front, t-ball field featuring Coweta County Commissioner Tim Lassetter and Grantville Mayor Casey Houston. They will then turn the field over to South Coweta Baseball Association president Greg Chambers for Opening Day festivities. The program will end around 10:30 with the throwing of the season’s “First Pitch” from Commissioner Tim Lassetter to South Coweta Baseball Association player William Strickland.

“This is a terrific new ballpark,” said Tim Lassetter, Commissioner, district two. “We are so pleased to be able to open this park and we’re even more pleased to have had such a great working relationship between the county and folks at the City of Grantville.”

The City of Grantville has park property that adjoins this Coweta County Recreation property. In support of the project, the city donated five acres to complete the county portion of this park and also funded one half of the estimated engineering costs.

The improvements made to the park are the result of many hours of labor – particularly from the Coweta County Public Works Division. There was significant grading, clearing and demolition that had to be done to get this space ready for the facility. The use of prison and county skilled labor is estimated to have saved about $1 million in the total cost of this facility.

Improvements to the park include: four baseball fields, a full service comfort station with concession stand, restrooms and pressbox/scorekeeper room. They also include a new parking lot and lighting. In addition, the work that was done included a significant portion of shared infrastructure with the soon to be built library – including parking, water, sewer, stormwater, fire protection and a new connecting road.

The total project and improvements represent about $2 million – about $800,000 of which is in shared infrastructure with the library. Architect Kip Oldham designed the comfort station, engineering firm Clough Harbour did the site engineering and planning and Astra Group was the general contractor for the fields.

“SPLOST is vital to projects like these. Because Coweta County voters have continued to support SPLOST, we’ve been able to build projects like these – projects that add so much to our community,” said Lassetter.

SPLOST – the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax – is a one cent sales tax that Coweta voters must approve every 6-7 years. SPLOST dollars must be spent on capital projects, like this one. SPLOST allows the county to build this type of facility without adding the building cost to the general budget. Because it is a sales tax, anyone who shops in Coweta helps fund these projects. And as Coweta has become a regional shopping destination, shoppers from across central Georgia have contributed to these projects.
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