The City of Andalusia is ready to move forward on its new Heritage Park, after the council saw updated engineering plans for the project and approved the expenditures of up to  $100,000 for materials and supplies earlier this week.

The park will be situated at the corner of South Cotton and Tisdale streets.

Daniel Wells, COO of CDG, Inc., presented the finalized plans to the council, and said that while a Corp of Engineers permit addressing a small wetlands issue near the railroad culvert is still needed, work on other areas of the park can begin.

“We have an agreement in place and mitigation credits for the wetlands,” he said. “All we need is a permit for that part.”

City crews will do the first work for the new park, which will include a 1.4 acre pond, a .25 mile, 8-foot wide concrete walking path, an exterior, 12-foot-wide, multi-purpose asphalt trail, an amphitheater that will seat about 300 people, and green spaces. The city also plans to add a carousel, gazebo, and pavilion in later phases.

City administrator John Thompson said a Memorandum of Agreement initiated by the Corp of Engineers and including the Alabama Historical Commission stating that the city will document the history of buildings formerly located on the park site has been formalized and signed by all parties.

The City plans to build the park in phases. For instance, in the initial phase, a concrete pad will be added for a planned carousel that will come later. Likewise, a bridge over the pond will come in a later phase.

The park’s concepts were designed by Concordia, an architectural, planning and community engagement firm based in New Orleans, with input from local residents who participated in a series of virtual and in-person town hall meetings.