(Seguin) -- Seguin's Park West initial phase is now 100 percent complete. The vision that got underway thanks to the city of Seguin's 2013 Bond Election has finally come full circle with the additions of a sidewalk project and pedestrian bridge.
City officials gathered on Tuesday afternoon at the edge of the bridge for a special ribbon cutting ceremony. The ceremony marked the now fully completed phase for the 47 acre community park at the corner of San Antonio and Vaughan avenues.
The idea for Park West got started with a vision that was created through a community parks master plan that was developed on behalf of the city by Rialto Studio in 2010. Voters would go on to approve the majority of the master plan's improvements during a bond election in 2013. The community park master plan also calls for the construction of a nataorium or aquatic center, that would be built near the Park West playground area. Another bond election would likely be needed to build that amenity. The city has announced no immediate plans to bring that issue to local voters.
Meanwhile, Seguin City Council members and others joined Parks Director Jack Jones for Tuesday's dedication ceremony.
Jones says the city, in particular, celebrated the sidewalk project which encompasses a 1-mile concrete multi-purpose trail through the park and woods. Included in the sidewalk project is the installation of the pedestrian bridge. He says the bridge extends over Walnut Branch along the east side of North Vaughan Avenue.
"In the past before the sidewalks were there, folks just walked in the middle of or on the side of North Vaughan or on the side of San Antonio and it was somewhat dangerous and so we were able to work with our Alamo Area Metropolitan Planning Organization. We put together a sidewalk/trail project and made it safe for folks to come to Park West that live in the neighborhoods that surrounds Park West," said Jones.
Jones says like the sidewalks, the bridge was also part of pedestrian safety.
"The bridge is the same thing because in the past, if you wanted to go across the Walnut Branch in that area whenever it's raining, the Branch had water going through it and so, you had to walk on the road on North Vaughan to cross the Walnut Branch. Now the pedestrian bridge makes it safe for pedestrians and bicyclists and joggers even to go across the creek after it rains and there is water running through the Walnut Branch," said Jones.
The Alamo Area Metropolitan Planning Organization Policy Board awarded the city matching funds through the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) for the sidewalk project.
Jones says thanks to the partnership, both the MPO and the city contribution for the project was approximately $900,000 each.
Jones says Park West over the years has shaped up nicely following it's initial skate park facility.
"This culminates the completion of the bond project that went to voters on 2013 and so really, we've got the west side of the park where you have soccer, you have the playground, you have the splash pad and basically, the east side of the park -- where the trail is going through - that's more kind of passive recreation, walking, jogging and even bird watching," said Jones.
Again, there are now six foot wide concrete trails and trail connections within Park West, mainly on the south side of the Walnut Branch. The Pedestrian Bridge at Park West also marks the city’s fourth pedestrian bridge, crossing Walnut Branch.