City of Tucson could propose millions for parks next council meeting

Updated: Jun. 7, 2018 at 7:48 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Parks were put on the back burner during the recession a decade ago, according to officials with the City of Tucson.

Now they're hoping to clean up parks and breathe new life into them across town.

Tom Choquette spends a part of each day at Freedom Park. On Thursday, he could be found cycling around the bike path.

"There's hardly anyone out there. It's good exercise," Choquette said.

He frequents parks like Freedom Park with his son, and has noticed some could use a little extra help.

"Keeping the garbage up. People are always littering, just keeping that up," he said.

Some relief could come soon as part of a possible new bond proposal, being looked into by the city. The council is putting together a $225 million bond package focused on park improvements around Tucson, at no extra cost to taxpayers.

Lane Mandle, the Chief of Staff for the City Manager told Tucson News Now, "We know the community loves sports centers, rec centers, ramadas, the amenities the community really uses all the time."

Others, spoken to off camera, told TNN that much money should be used for roads in Tucson.

Phillip Hernandez likes the idea of investing in city parks. He said it is more or less 'for the kids.'

Hernandez said, "They need somewhere to go. They need somewhere to be."

Choquette doesn't want to put the brakes on the idea either. He hopes more bike paths in the Golf Links area could be added in the future.

"It's close to my work. I could get exercise during my lunch hour and that'd be great," he said.

TNN is told the money for this would come from the city holding the current property rate as some older bonds are about to expire.

An official proposal will be brought before the city council on June 19.

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