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story.lead_photo.caption NWA Democrat-Gazette/J.T. WAMPLER Cyclists navigate a trail near the Razorback Greenway trail in Rogers.

ROGERS -- Money from the Walton Family Foundation will be used to update the city's downtown park, improve the Razorback Greenway and create a trail connecting the greenway to the Pinnacle Hills Promenade.

On Tuesday, the City Council authorized a contract with the Walton Family Foundation to accept $805,668 for the design of Frisco Park and another contract with the foundation to accept up to $1,010,625 for trail-related improvement.

Rogers firefighters honored Tuesday for 20 and 25 years of service:

• Scott Bliss

• Michael Cesasle

• Doug Earp

• Bryan Hinds

• Cliff Thompson

• Jeffrey Wassman

• Scott Mendham

• Clint Bowen

• Mike Johnson (not present)

• Keith Foster of the Police Department was also honored for 20 years of service.

Source: Staff report

City Council action

The Rogers City Council met Tuesday night and also approved:

• Establishing building codes and use classification for tiny houses. The new ordinance anticipates the state’s 2018 residential code, said Fire Chief Tom Jenkins. It will allow better inspection and control of single-family residences, specifically tiny homes, he said. The only area tiny houses will be allowed in the city are Eighth and 13th streets near Olive, Jenkins said. No community of tiny houses is planned at this time.

• Authorizing a contract with Crossland Heavy Contractors for construction services of Monte Ne Road realignment to include construction of water and sewer.

• Appropriating $22,200 from Airport Fund Reserves for a contract with Garver LLC. The funds will go toward a capacity study for the airport runway, said David Krutsch, airport manager. The preliminary study identifies potential needs within a multi-year capital improvement plan.

• Rezoning 5.10 acres of Blevins Family Farms at 1995 S. Wallis Road from agricultural to residential single family.

• Rezoning 7.54 acres at the southwest corner of W. Stave Mill Road from commercial to industrial.

• Accepting the final plat of Chandler Run Subdivision, phase one.

• Relocating an access easement to city property, and accepting a donation of a new access easement. The two parcels of land are owned by the same person and will allow him to develop the land closer to Walnut, said Jennifer Waymack, senior staff attorney.

• Filing a cleanup lien for the removal of overgrown brush and debris on property in Rogers.

The Northwest Arkansas Design Excellence Program announced awarding $3.6 million to projects in the area's four largest cities Nov. 16. The two contracts are a portion of that.

The NWA Trailblazers proposed improvements for the Razorback Greenway, said John McCurdy, community development director. The group handled consultation work for the greenway previously, as well as design work in Bentonville and Bella Vista, he said.

"The local group identified a number of issues with the greenway," McCurdy said. "They did the legwork on costs and projects. Almost all fix issues with the greenway in Rogers, such as sharp 90-degree turns, dropping tunnel [heights] to make it safer."

Some of the problem areas include New Hope Road and Interstate 49, Stone Manor Street and near Rife Medical Lane, said Lance Jobe, assistant city engineer, during a parks and recreation meeting earlier this month.

Plans include 500 feet of new trail to connect the greenway to Pinnacle Hills Promenade. The $1,010,625 should cover the entire project, McCurdy said.

McCurdy said the city will select three design firms to interview for the design of Frisco Park. The three will be chosen from a list supplied by the Walton Family Foundation, he said. No construction will be required until the end of 2019.

"That gives us time to work through the design," McCurdy said. Once a final budget has been made, the city will work through grants for construction services. The Parks Department will be involved every step of the way and make sure the result is sustainable for the city, he said.

"The design elements will activate Frisco Park and make it more of a usable space," McCurdy said. The changes will ideally make an architectural transition between the two sides of the train tracks. McCurdy said residents could expect some parking lots demolished and an increase in street parking.

The council also adopted the 2018 budget, which included a 3 percent pay increase for employees and an additional $20,000 for Christmas lights this year. A total of $176,976 was approved for city employees' Christmas bonus.

NW News on 11/29/2017

Print Headline: Walton Foundation grants set to improve trails, park

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