Members of the Bettendorf City Council and Bettendorf Park Board heard about plans for the proposed development of Forest Grove Park during a joint meeting Monday.
Plans for the 100-acre park, located near Forest Grove Drive and Middle Road, include an adventure course, community building, multiple trails, an amphitheater, a winter recreation area, a handicapped-accessible baseball field and a Great Lawn — a large, multi-use greenspace.
Property in the southwest corner of the park is planned as the future location of an elementary school in the Pleasant Valley School District, which would share some facilities with the park.
Mike Bell of RDG Planning, the firm designing the park, urged council and park board members to resist the temptation to develop the Great Lawn space for a specific use.
“One of your greatest challenges will be not to fill that thing,” Bell said.
Full implementation of the development plan would cost $18.5 million to $21.2 million, which would be done in multiple phases over several years.
Bell said the city should look into the formation of public-private partnerships and consider applying for grant funds when coming up with a plan to finance development of the park.
The proposed master plan lists as the top priorities the development of trails, the Great Lawn and the Community Corner, an area in the southeast corner of the park that would serve as a trailhead, provide access to tennis courts, provide parking and would include a playground.
Steve Grimes, Bettendorf parks and recreation director, told council and park board members one of the keys to the master plan was its flexibility. Grimes said development of a park on the scale of Forest Grove Park takes decades, and although a development plan is essential, the plan must be flexible.
“This is a fluid document,” he said.
City Administrator Decker Ploehn said he would like the council and park board to meet again in a joint session before the city begins formulating its five-year capital improvement plan to get input from council and board members about which elements of the park they think should be given top priority.