Parks and Recreation commissioners recommend draft master plan | NevadaAppeal.com

Parks and Recreation commissioners recommend draft master plan

Terri Harber
Appeal Staff Writer
Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal Nevada National Guard members Staff Sgt. Charles Fillman, left, and Sgt. 1st Class Richard Martinez measure a physical fitness course at the Riverview Park Tuesday afternoon. Carson City officials are considering a master plan update that includes more natural park areas and multi-use recreation facilities.
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Members of the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission on Tuesday evening unanimously approved the department’s 65-page draft master plan, after asking for a flurry of small fixes.

The nine-member panel is comprised of people with “varied interests,” which allows for an array of areas to be recognized, said Thomas Keeton, chair.

Among the members is one representative from the Carson City Board of Supervisors and one from the Carson City School District Board of Trustees, Pete Livermore and John McKenna, respectively.

“We can’t have something for everybody, but we’ll try to offer as many things as possible,” Keeton said.

Only one resident had comments before the vote. Jay Meierdierck, a former member of the commission, had more than six pages worth of comments about the plan. Among his many suggestions: Carson City needs two additional community parks, each one 20-40 acres in size.

One of the parks could be created “in cooperation with Western Nevada Community College,” and “when the adjacent state-owned Vicee Canyon lands are included, this option seems much more viable,” Meierdierck explained.

“While it is not central to the city … it is on a major collector street, Combs Canyon Road,” he said. “It would provide for expansion of the college and provide for their recreation.”

As the commissioners met at the Community Center, a flurry of activities were transpiring in other parts of the building and the neighboring Aquatic Center. A group of young girls were playing basketball as a few adults and younger children watched the game near the meeting room.

“They need to expand the Latchkey Program to school sites,” said Carson City resident Niena Hval. “It’s very hard to find day care in the early morning.”

Tina Johnston, who moved to Carson City recently from Lake Tahoe, was happy that there was team basketball available for her 11-year-old daughter, Janae.

“There are more activity opportunities for kids here in Carson than at the lake,” she said.

The document, which used information provided by focus groups and survey participants, noted preferences for natural areas over neighborhood parks and for multiuse indoor recreation facilities.

Residents who offered opinions also strongly favored the improvement of the Bob Boldrick Theater at the community center – even if a tax increase was needed to achieve it.

There will be more seniors and Hispanics seeking services than in the past, according to the plan, which likely means there will be changes in overall offerings to best cater to these groups.

Hispanics were actively sought out to participate in the survey by working with local organizations that deal with and serve them.

A Spanish-language version of the survey was created for these respondents, said Roger Moellendorf, director of the Parks and Recreation Department.

The effort provided “a feel for what Hispanics might be looking for,” Moellendorf said, though the responses weren’t random like the rest of the survey responses.

The city doesn’t print Spanish-language versions of the recreation schedules, but certainly hasn’t ruled out the idea, he also said.

After staff members incorporate the various changes suggested by the commissioners on Tuesday and continue evaluating public comments, the document will be put before the Planning Commission, then the Board of Supervisors for final approval.

“It is a living document,” Moellendorf added.

Supervisor Pete Livermore said the document likely would be brought before the board in February.

— Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1215.