Project undertaken to

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 28, 2000

renovate Murphree Park


Staff Writer

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Sept. 27, 2000 10 PM

With the community’s help, children in Troy will be playing on a first-class playground.

Jack Rainey and Robert Earl Stewart visited with members of the Troy City Council Tuesday night to ask them for backing on a project the Exchange Club of Troy is undertaking.

The local civic club is proposing to renovate Murphree Park to create something the entire community will be proud to use.

"Cities of comparable size have much better community parks," Stewart told the council members. "All segments use this park, have used this park and will continue to use this park."

But, it needs some work, they contend.

"We want to endorse a fund raising effort for Murphree Park," Stewart said.

He wants to create a place children and grandchildren will want to visit.

Troy Parks and Recreation Director Dan Smith has had Giffen Recreation of Birmingham create a plan for the park.

That frontier village theme plan includes a play area for children age 6 and under as well as equipment for older children.

"It’s not just a children’s park," Rainey said regarding the plans for a 10-station fitness station for adults and an improved walking trail.

"We think the addition of this equipment would make Murphree Park one of the finest attractions in the city," Smith said.

The steel and industrial-strength plastic playground equipment and new additions will not be the only things that make the park special. It will be a true community effort because plans are to have the community do it as a labor of both physical and financial means.

But, doing the project is going to cost an estimated $100,000 with the Exchange Club guaranteeing up to $25,000.

"We’re very optimistic," Stewart said of raising the necessary funds. "We’ve (the club members) been studying this for a year."

Council President John Witherington said refurbishing Murphree Park is "a great project."

Members of the council offered support of the project, but put off offering financial assistance until kinks are worked out of the budget for the upcoming fiscal year.