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Board talks parking lots, lights and resignations

PRINCETON — The Princeton Park District will go ahead with a paving project at the Bureau County Metro Center which will require the Metro Center to be closed for two-or-three days in late August.

At Monday's meeting of the Princeton Park Board, Superintendent of Parks Keith Scherer said two bids were received for the parking lot project, which includes the removal and paving of the center island that designates parking spaces for patrons. The project also includes the resurfacing of a dumpster collection site on the east side of the building. The park board awarded the Phase 1 project to Advanced Asphalt with a low bid of $43,602.

According to Elaine Russell, executive director, the park board hopes to have the project finished sometime during the last two weeks of August, as stated in the bid specifications. As soon as the dates are determined, the information will be posted at the Metro Center and also announced through area media. Bureau County Highway Engineer John Gross will oversee the project, she said.

Phase 2 of the parking lot project includes the resurfacing of the remainder of the Metro Center parking lot and will come from the 2014-15 fiscal year budget. Bids for Phase 2 will not go out until this time next year.

In other business at Monday's meeting, Russell said the Metro Center is nearing the completion of a three-year lighting upgrade project. The entire lower level and main floor of the Metro Center, along with all outside and parking lot lighting, has been changed to save on utility bills.

To fund the lighting upgrade, the park board budgeted about $12,000.00 a year toward the three-year project, plus the park district received $22,984 in grants for the project.

Also at Monday's meeting, the board accepted with regret the resignation of aquatics coordinator/interim recreation coordinator Beth Coleman, effective in two weeks.

In her resignation letter, Coleman said the decision to leave was not an easy one for her to make.

"The past six years have been rewarding, and I have grown professionally as a result of working for the Bureau County Metro Center," Coleman said. "I have enjoyed working for you (the board) and with all the part-time and full-time employees. Together we offered the community an array of opportunities and programs for individuals and families."

In looking for Coleman's replacement, Russell said the park district will seek a recreation coordinator who would oversee all aspects of recreation.

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