Market Street Park to open for Haunted HuntingburgOctober 4, 2018
By CANDY NEAL
HUNTINGBURG — Although construction work is still underway, Market Street Park is expected to be finished by the end of next week.
The park, with a price tag of more than $4.4 million, will be dedicated on Friday, Oct. 12, and next weekend’s Haunted Huntingburg event will be held there as the first official event in the downtown park, which spans between Third and Fourth streets and Main and Geiger streets with its center just east of Old Town Hall.
“It’s a lot to be done in a week, I’ll be honest with you,” Mayor Denny Spinner said today. “But that is our agreement (with the contractor), that they will have it done. I trust that they will.”
That agreement, reached in August, stated that the project would be substantially completed in time for Haunted Huntingburg.
The pavers for the street under the market pavilion at the park will not be in place by then. But the park itself will be closed to any traffic for the Haunted Huntingburg event, Spinner said. The pavers will be installed after the event.
Originally, the project was supposed to have been done by the end of the summer. But unforeseen work had to be done due to the soft subgrade, or soft soil, located throughout the site. Extra work had to be done to shore up the ground, to make sure it would be able to support all the features being installed in the park. That included removing old underground piping or filling it with grout, rock excavation work, and dealing with a fourth cistern that was found underground. Other cisterns were found and filled earlier this year.
The north end of the park, named German American Pavilion, will be an open entrance from Fourth Street, just east of the Current Blend building, that will include a plaza with tables and seating, a lawn terrace with seating, and a performance pavilion that can be used as a shelter house.
The center of the park, called Menke Plaza will be located just east of Old Town Hall and include a terrace with seating, a market pavilion with a walkway in the middle and curbless parking on either side, and a fountain.
The south end of the park, named Farbest Foods Commons, will include a legacy court and legacy wall, a south lawn and a ring-shaped walkway that will have features like a pergola and community swings.
Another project going on in the city, the railroad overpass, is getting closer to completion. The overpass is going over the railroad tracks near 12th Street just east of the Industrial Park and will have on its east side a walking path that will be part of the city’s Heritage Trail walking trail.
Work on the bridge itself is pretty much done. But the roads leading to the bridge, including portions of 12th, 14th and Chestnut streets, need to be strengthened to handle the additional traffic that will come once the bridge opens.
“The bridge is substantially completed, but the project is not done because the streets are not done yet,” Spinner said. “You’ve got the bridge done, but you have to get to the bridge.
“We didn’t want to open the project and still have a construction zone around it.”
Spinner said the overpass and road work is expected to be done by early November, weather permitting.
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