Planning continues for proposed park to honor unions

2013-01-04T18:45:00Z 2013-01-04T22:16:05Z Planning continues for proposed park to honor unionsChas Reilly chas.reilly@nwi.com, (219) 662-5324 nwitimes.com
January 04, 2013 6:45 pm  • 

MERRILLVILLE | Town leaders continue planning a project to transform an eyesore on Broadway into "beautiful attraction," Town Council President Carol Miano said.

Merrillville intends to create a park to honor local unions. Property the town recently acquired in the 7200 block of Broadway will be used for the facility.

Miano said she is scheduling meetings with area union officials to ask for their support in developing the land.

She said union officials could choose to erect walls in the facility to recognize their unions.

Miano said there are other ways they could participate, including donating benches, plantings and other items to fill the park.

Miano said union officials "don't have to invest thousands of dollars" and there is no obligation to participate.

Miano said the facility won't include playground equipment. Instead, it would be a place for reflection. The park also serves as a way "to remind people where the working class comes from," she said.

Clerk-Treasurer Eugene Guernsey said he is excited about the proposed facility and the opportunity to honor area unions.

"We're one of the strongest union towns in Lake County," he said.

Guernsey said collaborating with local unions will keep the cost low to develop the land.

Miano said there will be a groundbreaking for the facility, but it hasn't yet been scheduled. In the meantime, she is concentrating on ways to improve the property, which has become a place where people have dumped trash.

Miano said she intends to contact Lake County officials about the possibility of having county convicts provide volunteer service to clean the property.

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