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Legacy Foundation Awards $75,000 to Ottumwa Parks Master Plan

Greater Ottumwa Park is situated on over 300 acres in the center of our community, significant parts of which remain underutilized. Couple that underutilization with the park’s aging facilities, and we have a considerable opportunity to make improvements that can dramatically improve the quality of life for residents.

To develop a plan for the redesign and update of the park, the City of Ottumwa has sought out the help of professional design firms to build the Ottumwa Park Master Plan. Working with an experienced design firm has multiple benefits for the community, Zach Simonson, Community Development Director for the City of Ottumwa, said. “Professional design comes with the engineering work, phasing, and cost estimating that allows us to put projects out for bid efficiently and at a better cost. We also want to engage an exceptional planning firm because they have the experience and tools to bring together the agendas of a wide variety of stakeholders into a single vision we can all agree on and work towards.”

The team working on the project sent out a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) this summer, receiving five responses from highly qualified firms from across the country. Design Workshop, a North Carolina based firm, was selected as the best fit to design the Ottumwa Park Master Plan. While all five proposals were high quality, Simonson noted several reasons for moving forward with Design Workshop. “They have completed amazing projects including the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center, Riverfront Park in Denver, and the Titletown Plaza in Green Bay. Design Workshop’s approach also included designing two alternatives during the project to allow us to select the best fit. We saw this as a huge added value.”

The planning process includes a substantial opportunity for public input and feedback. “The city will launch a survey that will allow us to collect public opinion, and we’ll be holding at least two community touchpoint public meetings where you can share your desires and vision for Greater Ottumwa Park,” Simonson said. After the planning process, the City of Ottumwa will have a roadmap for all future development in Greater Ottumwa Park, including a master plan, illustrative renderings, cost opinions, and phasing options.

We are excited to announce our support of the Ottumwa Park Master Plan design process with a contribution of $75,000 to the City of Ottumwa for the project. “We are so excited to partner with the City and take all the conceptual work done with the Riverfront Renaissance Plan several years ago to the next level.  The parks are one of Ottumwa’s greatest assets and remain a significant opportunity to increase the quality of life in Ottumwa,” said Kelly Genners, Legacy Foundation President/CEO.

The City of Ottumwa is a long-standing partner of the Legacy Foundation. We have recently worked with the City to bring the Bridge View Center Hotel Project to fruition and complete the downtown streetscape project. Other collaborations since our inception include the Dilapidated Housing Program, Roof Grant Program, Master Façade Projects I and II, Canteen Alley, and the Rushing Way Parking Lot.