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“THE LAND AND OPPORTUNITY IS THERE,”
Pearsall City Councilors learned of potential designs that would upgrade and expand Victor Trevino Sports Complex and Polo Patino Park last week.
During a presentation by Debra Dockery, a consultant hired to evaluate the two city parks, councilors reviewed several options that would expand the concession area and bathrooms at the sports complex and the upgrades to the restrooms at the Polo Patino Park.
“The concession area is too small for hosting large events,” Dockery said. “It also needs a three-compartment sink and hand sink.”
Dockery’s design for the restrooms would shift all toilet stalls to get the required 5×5 space for compliance with the American Disabilities Act (ADA).
According to the findings by Dockery, the entryways into the restrooms are too narrow, accessories are not mounted at the correct height and the urinals are not ADA compliant.
The consultant is recommending cutting new doorframes, reconfiguring the toilet seats, replacing all accessories, adding ceramic walls, floor tile, and replacing all light fixtures with LED lights to save on energy costs.
“For the concession area we recommend expanding it by 10 feet all the way around,” Dockery said. “Adding new sinks, counters, new concession window and there is a big request to add air conditioning.”
The estimated cost for a restroom with ADA renovations is $130,000; adding ceramic tile would add an additional $16,500; new lighting costs $21,500.
Costs to expand the concession area is $251,000; adding air conditioning would tack on an additional $33,000; replacing all cabinetry an additional $45,000; and replacing the lighting an additional $21,000.
Councilors had asked Dockery to consider expansion of four additional baseball practice fields; the proposed cost is estimated at $988,000. This cost would include fencing, backstops, earthwork and sod.
“Those fields would be behind where they used to dump the brush,” Parks Director Ramiro Otero said.
An assessment conducted at the Polo Patino Park found there is not sufficient width or length to have multiple stalls in the existing restroom facility.
Dockery says an option would be to convert the two-stall restrooms into a single use facility.
The framing and facades are rotted and the metal roof is showing signs of deterioration, according to the assessment.
Another option presented to councilors would be to convert the current facility into a storage shed for the park and construct a new building to accommodate restrooms large enough for events held at the park.
“A simple building, which is quite common with a metal roof and concrete framing,” Dockery said. “It would be in a new location in between trees and near utilities.”
Dockery estimates renovation to the existing restrooms at Polo Patino Park would cost $81,500; a new restroom with four stalls each would cost $495,000.
According to Mayor Ben Briscoe, renovations and upgrades to the parks has been a budget discussion.
The mayor noted that councilors still needed to consider replacing the playground equipment at the sports complex and Moreno Park.
“Which one brings in the crowd,” City Manager Federico Reyes said. “Speaking to Mr .Otero, the complex, so I would venture to say the sports complex would be the one. We have budgeted a half million for upgrades to parks. I do not know if we will have enough money to do both but we could do some portions of each.”
According to Reyes, the city has been exploring funding options that include grants from the Texas Parks and Wildlife. The city can also use hotel occupancy tax (HOT) monies to upgrade the parks, currently, according to Reyes, the city has $800,000 in HOT revenue.
“I am not suggesting we do it now,” the city manager said. “but I know the desire is to have more practice fields, maybe creating multi-purpose fields. My point is the land and opportunity is there.”