PARKER, Fla. (WMBB) — Almost four years after Hurricane Michael’s destruction, the City of Parker began its reconstruction of the sports complex on Monday.
However, at Monday’s special meeting about the project, city leaders voted to make changes to the original plan for phase one sent to FEMA.
They want to make changes to the basketball, tennis and pickleball courts.
“If we just put a two-inch cap over the basketball courts, they say in about two years, we’re probably going to start seeing grass coming up in there,” public works director Tony Summerlin said. “It’s going to fail again. In addition, they said that the other court coming next to it really needs to have two more inches of base underneath it and another one-inch layer of asphalt to make both those courts last an estimated ten-plus years.”
The four courts, with new foundations, will now be further away from the road with chain-linked fencing.
However, the change order will cost the city over $111,000. Mayor Andrew Kelly said that will come out of their $4 million budget.
FEMA expects the city to have the project done by October 1.
“That’s not going to happen,” Mayor Kelly said. “I just don’t see that. We can’t get the contractors, the builders, the materials… It’s impossible for us to meet that deadline.”
The mayor said he is trying to stay optimistic throughout this process.
“I would like for it to be going faster than it is, but it’s very slow for a multitude of reasons,” he said. “There’s good things happening every day. I’m really positive about this and hoping that as time goes by, our city will look better and better every day.”
Construction for phase one is now estimated to be completed around mid-October. The city plans to request FEMA for an extension in September.