New RV park plans going forward

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Lincoln County Multi-Purpose Facility is about to expanddramatically with an addition that will provide hookups forrecreational vehicles and allow the complex to increase the sizeand variety of its events, county officials said.

The Lincoln County Board of Supervisors Monday voted unanimouslyto advertise for bids for the construction of a planned five-acre,53-unit RV park, complete with water, sewer and electricalconnections for the RVs. Optional amenities, such as a pavilion,rest facilities complete with men’s and women’s showers and arecreational area for children, are also being contemplated.

Lincoln County Administrator David Fields said the tentative budgetfor the project is approximately $350,000, with a 50 percentmatching grant of $250,000 from the Pearl River Basin DevelopmentDistrict available for use as well. Most – but not all – of thegrant will be put toward the project.

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A $97,000 grading and leveling job has already been done on thefuture park’s grounds north of the facility, which the county paidfor Monday. Bids for the park will be advertised in mid-Decemberand opened and voted on in early January, officials said.

“It’s going to be neat out there. If we can do all that’s on [themaster plan], it’ll be a nice place,” Fields said. “We’ll just haveto see what the bids are. Nobody really expects us to be able to doit all, but it will give us something to work toward.”

Dungan Engineering, PA Civil Engineer Ryan Holmes said the bid willbe released with the park’s various features – like the showerfacilities and a basketball court – listed as line items, allowingthe county to include or discard them as funds allow. The alternatebids will also allow the county to lower the number of RV slotsthat will be constructed if necessary.

“It will allow the county flexibility,” Holmes said. “We’ll do asmuch as is feasible. The bids might come in under budget, and then[the county] can do it all. If it don’t, they’ll be able to pickand choose.”

Holmes said his firm has worked closely with the multi-purposefacility commission to customize the RV park to the county’sexpected needs. One park feature that has received close attention,he said, is size – the space available on the facility’s groundsand the size of the RV slots.

“We designed it to maximize the space they have,” Holmes said.”You’ve got campers and motor homes that are very large, andthey’re not easy to turn or back in, so when we designed it we tookthat into consideration. There are guidelines and standards outthere that are kind of minimum standards – we’ve done at least thatand sometimes more.”

Facility Manager Quinn Jordan said the project is largest everundertaken by the commission. He said the commission chose to moveforward with RV park because of its ability to generate revenue forthe county and city – not only because of the usage fee, butbecause of the park’s expected ability to attract travelers.

“We were looking for something that would have the biggest economicimpact first,” Jordan said. “With the RV park in place, we’ll beable to bring in larger shows – shows that last multiple days – andthat will bring in more tax revenue for both the county and city.When people stay here, they spend money here.”

Jordan said the RV park would not only serve the multi-purposefacility, but also the Hansel King Sportsplex, which will beconnected to the park via cart path. He said the commissionenvisions the city being able to market activities at thesportsplex with the offer of adjacent fee camping.

Jordan also predicted the RV park would pull in travelers movingthrough the county on Interstate 55 and Highway 84. He said thecommission plans to advertise the park once it’s complete.

Multiple uses for the RV park was a requirement from the beginningof planning, Jordan said.

“The first thing we do on any project is make sure that whatever wedo is beneficial for all of Lincoln County,” he said. “We’re veryconscientious of how we spend taxpayers’ dollars – we want to makethem go as far as possible.”