June 21, 2006
Albany - The developers of Albany's Riverfront Park aren't happy the City plans to use park improvement money to clean up contaminated city property. The President of Albany Tomorrow says losing $750,000 would jeopardize several park projects. ATI leaders hope city commissioners will reconsider using sales tax money, allocated for park additions, to clean up lead contamination.
The city was order by the EPD to remove contaminated soil found on city property east of the river on Broad Avenue. Commissioners discussed pulling $750,000 from the Riverfront Park improvement project to pay for the clean-up, since the land is part of the park master plan. But ATI President Tommy Chatmon said the City should reallocate a little money for various sales tax projects rather than take a huge chunk from the park.
"There would have to be some decision about what we would give up," said Tommy Chatmon. "Obviously, to lose 750,000 out of the project would dictate that we would have to remove a scope of the services of that project and some of the amenities of it."
Phase Two of the Riverfront Park includes an extension of the trail, renovations to the Bridge House, a pedestrian bridge and a Ray Charles Memorial Park. Chatmon says they haven't discussed which project would be cut if the City reallocates the money.
He plans to meet with the City Manager soon.