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The City of Thomasville’s focus on improving public greenspaces has recently hit several milestones. Earlier this month, new playground equipment was unveiled at both Weston and MacIntyre Parks. This week, City staff announced the completion of a newly reconstructed dock at Cassidy Pond Park.

“We’ve recently had quite a bit of improvement at Cassidy Pond Park, with the installation of new signage, tables and benches,” said Jerry Pionessa, Assistant City Manager/City Engineer. “However, the greatest need at Cassidy Pond was the replacement of the decking on the dock. This is a park that our citizens enjoy, and we need to make sure they can fish and use the facility safely.”

The total amount of the dock repair, which was funded by the 2012 SPLOST, was $19,695.00. Pionessa said that the dock was repaired with composite material, rather than pressure treated lumber. “The cost to use the composite material was only slightly higher than pressure treated lumber, but the result is that the life cycle of the decking is now greatly extended,” he said.

Another popular Thomasville park took a step forward in a separate improvement project, when Thomasville City Council approved a request to award a contract for work at Cherokee Lake Park. The contract was awarded in the amount of $788,416 and was also funded through 2012 SPLOST dollars. The contract covers work to the design and construction of the lake dam, drainage piping, and other lake improvements such as fish habitats. The project will also include a widened trail along the west side of the lake, which will eventually connect to the Community Trail that will cross Smith Avenue at Susie Way and connect via Reid Street to the trail portion at Hansell Street.

“We know our community has been anxious to see work begin at Cherokee Lake, but we couldn’t start construction until the lake bed was completely dry,” said Pionessa. “This gave us an opportunity to work with community volunteers from Hands On Thomas County to make sure the lake bed was clean from any trash or debris that was revealed when the lake was drained. Now, the conditions are what we need to begin the construction phase of the project.”

The Cherokee Lake Park project is expected to be completed in early Spring 2018. At that time, the City will continue the park improvement process with Paradise Park.

“We’ve had great success with the charrette process for park improvements at both MacIntyre and Weston Parks,” said Pionessa. “We look forward to continuing these discussions with our community when we turn our focus to Paradise Park and work together to develop a plan to better utilize this historic greenspace.”

During the Paradise Park charrette, a master park plan will be developed to help guide a multi-year improvement process. Similar processes are in progress for MacIntyre Park and Weston Park; the master plans for each are available at The Paradise Park charrette is tentatively planned for late Spring 2018.