MERRILLVILLE | The Preserve subdivision has its own park after years of waiting.
Playground equipment and a rubberized surface recently were installed on property in the subdivision along Mississippi Street and south of U.S. 30.
Town Councilman Shawn Pettit said the project still requires some landscaping, but that hasn't stopped many Preserve residents from visiting the new facility.
"A lot of people have been down there," Pettit said.
Town leaders have worked for several years to create the park.
"I'm glad to finally see it in," Merrillville Parks Superintendent Caryn Wilson said.
The parcel in which the park was created was donated to Merrillville several years ago, but town officials didn't record it in the town's name at that time.
The property was later sold in a tax sale to a private owner.
Merrillville bought the land in the 2100 block of 87th Avenue last year for $23,000. Funds from the Mississippi Street tax increment financing district were used for the purchase.
The Preserve subdivision isn't the only area of town to receive a new park.
Merrillville is developing Union Park in the 7200 block of Broadway. A completion date hasn't been established for that facility, which will honor local unions.
Wilson said she also is working to update some existing parks in town.
During each of the last two years, the council has appropriated $75,000 from the cumulative capital development fund for new park equipment.
Wilson said she hopes that will happen again in 2014 to continue the upgrades. She said there will be an evaluation of Merrillville park properties to determine equipment needs at the town's parks.