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Future of Mercury Park skate rink site? Grass field

Alexander Sinn • Mar 21, 2019 at 2:00 PM

GRAND HAVEN TWP. — A pickleball court and splash park were among the options Grand Haven Township officials considered for the former skating rink site at Mercury Park.

Those options are now off the table, as the rink will be replaced with a grass field.

The township’s Parks & Recreation Board made the decision this month, saying a multipurpose field is the best and most cost-effective fit for that park.

Township Manager Bill Cargo said the grass, and the irrigation system, will likely not be a major cost for the township. The cost to remove the rink and replace it with hydroseed was expected to cost about $15,000.

The rink was razed in November 2018. 

The township parks board determined amenities like a splash park would likely bring people from outside the community, Cargo said, while Mercury Park is intended for neighborhood use.

“It could have a regional draw and may be too small for something like that,” he said. “Some of the other land owned by the township is more suitable for pickleball and/or a splash park.”

Meanwhile, the township is seeking grant funding to carry out its Hofma Vision plan, which entails numerous recreation enhancements at Hofma Park and Preserve. Township officials have chosen the Wolfe property portion of Hofma Park to be the future site of numerous sports and recreation fields — possibly including pickleball courts.

Last year, township officials determined the skating rink at Mercury Park had fallen into disrepair amid dwindling use. Two years earlier, residents petitioned the removal of the rink, but no opposition was organized last fall amid the decision by the Township Board to remove the rink.

Other options that had been considered for the site included a dog park and playground.

There is no ongoing discussion of future uses beyond a multipurpose field, Cargo added.

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