CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Another chunk of funding has been pledged for the proposed East End Community Park off Dixie Street, and the money will pay for an enhancement to the project.
Karen Haddad, a board member for the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority, said during a Wednesday meeting that the Haddad Foundation would provide about $25,200 to pay for paver stones to be placed under the pavilion in the park.
David Gilmore, senior land development service manager for GAI Consultants, had brought up an alternative to the $429,985 bid to build the first phase of the park that would raise the cost by $34,000.
The alternative included a $25,200 bid to place the pavers under the pavilion and about $8,800 to bury utility lines in the park.
Authority board members questioned whether they should contribute the whole amount when they already had allocated about $200,000 to acquire the property and about $260,000 for construction of the park.
"My biggest concern is yes, we've spent a lot of money on this," said Diane Strong-Treister, a board member. "But where do we say we're not going to be the main body to fund this project?"
Board member Lew Tyree compared the request for the additional funds to a daughter going to an expensive college and asking for more money to pay bills. It is difficult for the board to "look back now," he said.
However, Treister added that the agency has provided nearly half a million dollars for the project and construction hasn't even begun.
Board member Andrew Jordon asked if the priority was burying the utility lines. Other members suggested the board consider paying for relocation of the utilities now and consider the pavers later.
Haddad then said the foundation would provide the $25,200 for the pavers.
"We're so far into this project we can't back up and second-guess," she said.
"That is very generous," Gilmore said.
The motion to allocate an additional $8,800 to pay for the relocation of the utility lines passed unanimously.