Tuolumne County officials will host a series of public meetings next week to gather ideas for what the community would like to see in a possible new regional park that would be located across the street from Standard Park Sports Complex in East Sonora.
The county is planning to submit an application next year for a grant through a new program under the California Parks and Recreation Department that would fund the proposed park’s development.
It would be developed on about 10 acres owned by the Redding-based timber company Sierra Pacific Industries at the northeast corner of Standard and Tuolumne roads.
Siegfried Engineering, based in Stockton, was hired by the county Board of Supervisors for $13,000 from the facilities maintenance budget to assist with the application process.
The same firm was hired by the county in 2016 to assist with an application for a grant to build youth soccer and basketball facilities on the same piece of land, though the county didn’t receive the funding.
This new grant program is funded by Proposition 68, a general obligation bond approved by California voters in the June 5 primary election that provides $4 billion for state and local parks and other infrastructure projects.
County officials who worked on the previous grant say the new program is wider in scope, meaning the community can consider more options for the types of amenities it wants in the park beyond just soccer fields and basketball courts.
The maximum amount the county could receive is $8 million.
Public input and involvement in the process will give the county a better chance at receiving the funds from the state.
The county would not be required to provide any matching funds if it receives the money. However, the county will have to pay for all ongoing operational and maintenance costs.
Sierra Pacific agreed to lease the land to the county for the previous park proposal and would do the same if the new application is successful.
The land is part of a 50-acre parcel that the company plans to give to the county whenever it completes development of its long-proposed Peaceful Oak Estates subdivision in the area.
A private, nonprofit group called The Park Foundation is also planning to develop a large-scale public park about a half-mile from where the county’s regional park would be located on 112 acres it recently purchased for $1 million from Sonora Union High School District.
All four of the upcoming meetings on the county’s regional park plans will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in various locations throughout the county.
The schedule and locations of the meetings is as follows:
• Tuesday, Dec. 11, Jamestown Elementary School, in the multipurpose gym, at 18299 Fifth Avenue, Jamestown.
• Wednesday, Dec. 12, Twain Harte Elementary School, in the cafeteria, at 18815 Manzanita Drive, Twain Harte.
• Thursday, Dec. 13, the Board of Supervisors chambers, fourth floor of the County Administration Center, at 2 S. Green St., Sonora.
• Dec. 17, Columbia Elementary School, in the cafeteria, at 22540 Parrotts Ferry Road, Sonora.
Contact Alex MacLean at email@example.com or (209) 588-4530.