This week the Coeur d’Alene City Council voted for significant compromise on the McEuen Park project.
Since the initial plan design many changes have been made — all of them removing items from construction in response to citizen feedback and financial realities. Here are some key compromises that need to be clear:
• The boat launch will stay
• The cost for Phase One has been cut in half
• There will be no street closures
• Five acres of parking lot on the water will be relocated and replaced with active parkland
• Tubbs Hill is not a part of the project
• Work on relocating baseball to equal or better facilities is actively under way
These changes are not universally supported — each has strong advocates. But the city has listened to all citizens and compromised considerably. I am confident that the core transition to reclaim green space by replacing parking on this most important public land will be exceptionally beneficial to the overall community long term.
It may be an old cliché, but when you make an omelet you have to break some eggs. This experience of trying to revitalize McEuen Park has been trying for all involved and has definitely “broken some eggs.” But the mission of the diligent and thoughtful citizen’s committee included serving the greatest number of uses for the greatest number of people, of all ages and abilities.
With compromise and hard work this scaled down version of the McEuen Park plan accomplishes that.
Coeur d’Alene City Council President