MUNSTER | The Munster Redevelopment Commission recently authorized the design of four Little League baseball fields and the associated infrastructure at Community Park.
It is the first of two authorizations needed to speed the designs.
The Munster Park Board also must approve the Little League field design and is expected to do so at a joint meeting of the Park Board and the Redevelopment Commission on March 13. Other proposals for Community Park redevelopment also will be discussed at that meeting.
If all approvals are provided at that meeting, the Redevelopment Commission will award the contract, and construction can begin as soon as the Little League season ends.
“Some minor work can be conducted as the season winds down,” said Clay Johnson, assistant town manager. “We have tried to build in additional buffer time to avoid completing construction and installing sod too late in the season.”
Funds from the Munster tax increment financing district are being used to redevelop Community Park, which is within the TIF district. The Munster Redevelopment Commission, which is composed of the five Town Council members and nonvoting Munster School Board member Judith Florczak, control the TIF monies generated by business property taxes.
In other business, the Redevelopment Commission rejected three proposals submitted for sports lighting to be installed on the newly constructed fields in Community Park.
“The town sought proposals believing that the quotes received would be below the $150,000 requirement to solicit formal bids. Three were received by the town, two of which were clearly over this $150,000 threshold,” Johnson said.
“Even if we accepted the lowest apparent bidder’s two alternative deductions, the cost of the bond would put them over the threshold as well,” he said.
A bond is required for any company working on this TIF-funded project and is 10 percent of the base proposal.
The town manager’s staff placed an advertisement in The Times last week to solicit formal bids for sports lighting.