City council finalizes park plans

April 19, 2013 by  

Maryland Heights’ city councilors have apparently cleared the county’s plan to build a treetop adventure course in Creve Coeur Park, according to a Twitter update by St. Louis Dispatch reporter Steve Giegerich.

The plan, earlier approved by the St. Louis County Council in February, was on the agenda for the April 9 council meeting. The proposal was heavily promoted by the council, with city staff utilizing printing services to prepare a 24-page report outlining both the project plans and an impact study.

The city’s partner will be Go Ape, an originally London-based company whose American branch currently runs four sites in or near Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, Washington, D.C., and Williamsburg, Virginia. Courses consist of a variety of swings, ladders, rope bridges, and zip lines, with alternate routes if the segment seems too intimidating. A portion of the admission fee, $55 for adults, is paid to the park.

The only real negative cited in the city’s report was the possibility of an ‘adverse impact’ on trees, birds, and other animals. This same objection forced the relocation of the current project from its originally planned location, Greensfelder Park in Wildwood. Proposed in order to generate revenue in the face of expected budget shortfalls, the Greensfelder project ultimately caused too much friction amongst naturalists and equestrians to gain approval.

An opposition movement also formed when the plan moved to Creve Coeur, with concerned citizens generally feeling that the council was moving too quickly and asking too few questions. Be that as it may, the council’s approval means that Creve Coeur Park will have a new adventure course this summer. When the department is called Parks and Recreation, sometimes recreation wins.