The Parks and Recreation Commission reviewed a proposed master plan Tuesday that calls for parks and other facilities in 30 "neighborhoods" that make up the city. It also calls for construction of at least one more major community park like Mills Park.
Consultant Jeff Winston told the joint session of Parks and Recreation and the city Planning Commission they need to adopt plans now before the city becomes "built out" by growth.
"When we achieve build-out, there isn't any more land for parks," he said.
Winston said some of those neighborhoods - defined by major streets and unified by density, housing type and other features - are already built out, leaving no land for new parks.
He said Mills Park is already overloaded and overused so "There needs to be at least one more Mills Park, maybe two."
Winston and city planner Roger Moellendorf said the top choice for a second major community park is a piece of Bureau of Land Management land straddling Arrowhead Drive near the airport.
Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman Tom Keeton said the challenge in implementing the master plan will be finding the money. He and members Tom Patton and Donna Curtis said the city needs to get more revenue from the residential construction tax.
"It's clear $1,000 per house is not adequate to build a neighborhood park today," said Patton.
He suggested the city require developers to agree to provide for construction of new parks as a condition of approval. Juan Guzman, the city planner in charge of open space, said that might require legislative approval, just as it would to increase the tax.
"I think the issue is clear - we must secure more funding," said Keeton.
The panel agreed it should take the issue to the next Legislature, hopefully teamed up with Washoe, Douglas Lyon and other counties.
That was just one of a long list of recommendations for Winston and city planners to consider in refining the draft master plan.
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