LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - They've been talking about it for quiet some time but real construction is finally underway at Tuten Park. The city park has been closed for several years.
According to city officials this is the first of several phases to revitalize the park. This phase covers about seven acres of the 24 acre park at a cost of $650,000. It will include new cement walking paths, bike trails, picnic tables and a nature center. The new 750 square foot nature center will be a interactive classroom for Calcasieu Parish students.
"The park will be used as a sanctuary for native plants, birds and wildlife. We are going to make it more useable. It's going to have walking trails and nature trails," said John Cardon, Lake Charles City Administrator.
Phase I is expected to be complete in October of this year. Cardone said work will then begin on Phase II.
"We want to do this part now so it can be utilized. We are going to clear more of the trees and area out in Phase II as well and enhance the park with more walking trails," said Cardone.
Other features of the park will include professional landscaping, an irrigation system, playground equipment and shaded sitting areas.
"This is an investment we plan to protect. We will have surveillance cameras with the park. We feel good about it. It's going to be secure and fenced in. Once complete it should be a tremendous benefit to the community," said Cardone.
According to Cardone of the $650,000 price tag for Phase I, $200,000 came from a state grant.