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Blue Anchor Park restrooms get green light

Skate plaza nears completions
By: Laura O’Brien, Loomis News Correspondent
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Longtime plans for a multi-use plaza and a public restroom at Blue Anchor Park are coming to fruition this spring.    

The Nancy Beck Multi-Use Plaza featuring skate-park elements is scheduled for completion by the end of this month, said Town Engineer Brian Fragiao.

Town Council members last month authorized a contract for a prefabricated restroom that will be installed south of the Loomis Train Depot along the fence line. Fragiao said the restroom project is scheduled for completion this summer. 

The multi-use plaza includes wave-shaped walls, a railed stairway and several reclaimed boulders that may be used for skate tricks. Town Council awarded the $191,550 construction contract to Grand Sierra Construction of Rocklin in November. Funding came from General Fund reserves slated for park development. Grand Sierra’s was the lowest of six bids received.

Jennifer Knisley served on the Parks, Recreation and Open Space Committee from its inception in 2009 through its disbanding last summer.  She said fellow committee member Nancy Beck, who died last March, favored including skateboarding features in the design of the multi-use plaza.

“She was always very passionate to have something for the kids to do,” Knisley said.  “She really cared about Loomis and she cared about the kids. She was a huge community person, so I’m glad they’re naming (the plaza) after her.”

Public meetings solicited residents’ input in the plaza design process, Knisley said.  During discussions pre-dating construction of the Blue Anchor Stage in 2011, which the Town rebuilt in 2012, possible plaza uses included a space for performing acts, plays and concerts. Fragiao said the Town may use the plaza for vendor displays at events such as the Eggplant festival. 

The Town first went out to bid for both the plaza and bathroom along with Blue Anchor Park in December 2010.  Council members authorized the park plans in time to meet a deadline for using grant funds, but they delayed the multi-use plaza, bathroom and a water spray feature. 

“Back then the council didn’t want to do (the multi-use plaza) because of funding and so we waited two years and now we’re piece-mealing it in,” Fragiao said.

The long-awaited public restroom got a green light at the Town Council meeting Feb. 12.  Council members authorized the $84,763 restroom contract with CXT Inc., a national concrete restroom builder.  Funding comes from the community facilities account in the General Fund reserves.  The Town solicited bids from three other prominent restroom companies, but did not receive proposals from them according to a staff report.

The water spray feature planned for the circular dirt pad next to the train depot is estimated at a cost of $50,000 and is included in the 2013-2014 Capital Improvement Program.

In other parks news, both Blue Anchor Park and Sunrise Loomis Park will get fresh signage reminding residents of Town ordinances against smoking and drinking alcohol at parks and ensuring that dogs are on leashes or under control of their owners, Fragiao said. 

Infractions can result in tickets, he said.