Merrillville Town Council gives OK to purchase parcel for Preserve park site

2012-10-09T22:30:00Z 2012-10-09T22:40:03Z Merrillville Town Council gives OK to purchase parcel for Preserve park siteDeborah Laverty deborah.laverty@nwi.com, (219) 762-1397, ext. 2223 nwitimes.com

MERRILLVILLE | Residents living in the Preserve subdivision will soon have their own park following action taken Tuesday by the Town Council.

The Merrillville council directed Town Attorney John Bushemi to go forward with purchase of the parcel from the property owner.

The cost of the parcel in the 2100 block of 87th Avenue is $23,000, council President Shawn Pettit said.

Merrillville will be able to purchase the land using funds from the Mississippi Street tax increment financing district, Pettit said.

The Preserve subdivision is on Mississippi Street south of U.S. 30 and Westfield Southlake mall.

The parcel was donated to Merrillville several years ago, but Merrillville did not record it in the town's name, Pettit said.

The property was later sold in a tax sale to a private owner.

Pettit said the 115 houses in the Preserve subdivision have never had their own park.

Some council members discussed the possibility of tabling the issue until determining if tax increment financing funds also could be used for park equipment.

Pettit, whose district includes the Preserve subdivision, pushed for a vote.

"I don't want to lose this opportunity. At least let John (Bushemi) procure the property. Then we can go ahead with the question about the equipment," Pettit said. 

In other business, Town Councilman Tom Goralczyk, D-4th, said he had attended a meeting on the U.S. 30 service roads improvement project.

Goralczyk said he voiced concerns on behalf of the town about a number of problems with relocation of utilities, including 12 NIPSCO lines.

The good news is most of the work on the service roads, which run parallel to U.S. 30, should be completed by early December, Goralczyk said.

Pettit said he had received a number of complaints, including from U.S. 30 businesses, and agreed with Goralczyk.

"We need to have a sit-down with the utilities," Pettit said.

The project is under the direction of the Indiana Department of Transportation and not the town, officials said.

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