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Public feedback sought for West Beach playground project

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014 7:21 p.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014 6:46 a.m. CDT

CRYSTAL LAKE – Residents will have an opportunity to weigh in Thursday on planned improvements to the aging West Beach playground on Crystal Lake during a special board meeting.

The meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. at the West Beach Recreation Building at 2330 Lake Ave., will give residents an opportunity to review three proposed renovations for the small playground before construction begins in the early fall.

Park district executive director Jason Herbster said each option is similar with a climbing structure and swing set featured as the centerpiece. He said the new playground would have a smaller footprint than the existing one and would be constructed so the view of the lake would not be disturbed.

"It's a pretty small playground, but it gets a fair amount of use from people who go to West Beach and live near there," Herbster said. "It's been part of our capital replacement plan to replace it."

The final cost of the project would be determined by which plan is selected. No action will be taken by the board as the meeting was scheduled only to hear from the public, Herbster said.

The project is one of multiple renovations occurring at Crystal Lake parks, including a major $1.2 million makeover of Woodscreek Park that includes a splash pad, a second tennis court, a second fishing pier, bocce courts, baggo courts and a new parking lot.  The district received a $400,000 grant for that project.

Renovations also are occurring at the small playground at Barlina House Preschool. Herbster said construction on all the projects should be completed in the fall.

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