Pocatello Parks and Rec. Department has big plans for Ross Park's future

Big plans for Ross Park's future

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - On Thursday, the Pocatello Parks and Rec. Department held its second public meeting to discuss the draft of the Ross Park master plan. 

Ross Park sits on over 145 acres of land, only 95 of which are currently developed.

The Parks and Rec. Department is currently planning on making some major changes that could take between five to twenty years to see. 

“There is a lot of exciting potential improvements in here and so far every single one of them has been driven by community input received,"Parks and Rec. Director John Banks said.

"I’m hoping that this plan and the final version of it is a representation of exactly what the community wants.” 

The plan has been in the works for nearly a decade and has some major components such as plans to connect upper and lower Ross Parks, as well as a relocation of Second Avenue to expand ballfields and eliminating vehicular traffic on lower parts of the park. 

“It’s going to take a while to accumulate the resources to relocate a Second Avenue or to create an access road connectivity from upper to lower parks," Banks said. 

There is no exact budget at the moment, but Banks believes it will carry a hefty price tag.

“I can’t even imagine," he said. "It’s substantial, certainly in the millions.” 

But those are components of the master plan that likely wouldn't be seen for at least 15 years.

“Some of the other recommended improvements, like a new skateboard park or a new bandshell or the reorientation the baseball fields to create more available space for parking and other amenities, those maybe are a little more short term," he explained.

Now, this is all still a plan. Nothing has been set or accepted yet and the group is still looking at new ideas. 

“We try and include everybody’s input, good, bad or indifferent and work it into the plan so that everybody can kind of take ownership of it.”

Banks said his plan is to hold two meetings in June and August and will likely have a final draft ready for presentation in early fall. 

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