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Gomsrud designs make debut

FAIRMONT– The city of Fairmont has been working with consultants on developing four concept designs for the Gomsrud Park redevelopment project.

City Engineer, Troy Nemmers, explained that they’re looking at a redevelopment plan with the main focus being on the boat ramp and the parking lot, as they’re in the worst condition.

“When staff looked at it, we felt it was important to look at a whole master plan with the park, utilizing what’s already there and maybe adding a few other amenities and features,” Nemmers said.

He said all of the existing features, like the play areas and pavilion, are intended to stay. Rather they’re looking at upgrading the spaces around the park.

The four renderings, created by landscape architecture firm, SGA Group, are different themes. The consultants labeled them recreation heritage/education, event-based recreation, naturalistic “rustic” and water-based recreation.

“It was nice to see they’re all quite different,” Nemmers said.

The designs have different access points to the park, different sized parking lots and boast various features correlating with the different themes.

Next week, the city will have a booth at the Martin County Fair where some information on the park redevelopment plans will be available and the four renderings will be able to be viewed. Nemmers said while they won’t really be taking comments at that time, it will provide an opportunity for people to look at the different concept designs.

“They can get an idea of what we’re thinking about so they can provide feedback,” Nemmers said.

Feedback will be sought at a public input meeting from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Aug. 25 at the SMEC building in Fairmont.

“We really want people to say, ‘I will really this, and I really like this,’ and take the four concepts and hone in on one or two, depending on how different they are for a final design,” Nemmers said.

The cost estimate will be developed off of the final schematic design.

Nemmers said they’d like to have preliminary numbers ahead of the preliminary city budget in September. Then the plan is to present two final concept plans to the city council in late October or early November.

“Following the council’s final selection we will estimate total costs and have those prepared ahead of the final budget approval in December,” Nemmers said.

If the budget is approved with money set aside for the project, work would begin as early as 2023. Nemmers also said this could be a long-range project with work being done in a couple phases.

Previously, the Fairmont Park Board has indicated that work on Gomsrud Park is one of the projects they’d like the city council to include in the 2023 budget.

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