Published: Jul 11, 2012 05:19 PM
Modified: Jul 11, 2012 05:21 PM
Morrisville Council balks at cost of ball fields
Cedar Fork project comes in at $1 million
MORRISVILLE - A proposal to spend about $850,000 to build two baseball fields near the Cedar Fork Community Center has been put on hold.The Morrisville Town Council on Tuesday expressed shock and concern over increased project costs, which have doubled. The ball fields were originally estimated to cost about $430,000. After putting the project out for bid, contractors came back with a $961,500 figure. Development fees and contingencies would push the cost to about $1.1 million. Parks and Recreation Director Jerry Allen said he was able to reduce the cost for construction to about $800,000 by working with the low bidder to downgrade features on the site and recruiting volunteers for some of the landscaping work. “I have a little bit of sticker shock,” said Councilman Mark Stohlman. “I can’t in good conscience accept (close to) $1 million for two ball fields.”The town has about $1 million in its Parks and Greenways Capital Fund that could be used for the ball fields. Another $1.5 million could be coming in the next year or so from developments pending construction, Allen said. Morrisville also has $4 million in parks bonds that needs to be spent by 2014. But the council anticipates that most of the bond money will be used to complete the 25-acre RTP Park.Also given the wide variance in the cost estimates, the council was unsure if moving ahead on the ball fields was the right move. “In the end do we want a full RTP Park or half an RTP Park and two ball fields?” asked Councilwoman Liz Johnson. The council said they would like the staff to focus on completing RTP Park which will have a full-size regulation cricket field, a first for the area. The closest regulation field is in Wintersville, according to the Triangle Cricket League’s website.Morrisville has already spent about $180,000 of $250,000 on the design for the RTP Park.