Nature Park playground render

A render of the playground equipment that will be added to Nature Park.

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A new playground set will be constructed at Nature Park later this year.

During the Rexburg City Council meeting on Wednesday, council members voted to approve a budget adjustment to add $200,000 from the city’s reserves in its general fund to its park construction fund.

There was already $110,000 in the construction fund, which gives the city $310,000 to fund the project, said Chief Finance Officer {span}Matt Nielson{/span}.

Nielson said some of the funds for the project are coming from the remaining balance of federal COVID-19 relief money.

“The way that general fund reserve got built up was by us receiving quite a bit, almost half a million dollars in COVID relief money, that federal grant money is where these proceeds came from,” Nielson said.

The city plans to add a playground set to the park, featuring three towers with multiple slides, a swing set, benches, climbing spaces and a small zipline.

Councilwoman {span}Tisha Flora{/span} said the new playground equipment was a dream come true and something she and other council members have wanted to see for a long time.

“While our parks are very beautiful and so well maintained, a lot of our equipment has gotten older and it’s just been a dream to start working on some upgrades at our parks,” Flora said. “We don’t have anything like this in our area.”

Council members said they were happy to see the project start to get going. Councilman {span}Mikel Walker{/span} said that it was time for the city to start spending money that it had been saving for projects.

Councilwoman {span}Bryanna {/span}{span}Johnson{/span} said it was a good idea to move forward with the project now because the city had received COVID-19 relief money.

“Our parks are at capacity. We have a lot of young people in our city so I think this would really help.” Johnson said.

A new restroom facility will also be going into Nature Park. During the meeting, Public Works Director {span}Keith Davidson{/span} asked the council to select a bidder for a precast concrete restroom at the park. The council chose Mountain West Precast with a bid of $86,628.

Construction on the project is expected to begin this summer. Flora said she hopes the project will be finished by September but it will depend on the supply chain of the equipment and how fast it can be delivered to the city.

“It might not be this summer but it’ll be close to this summer,” she said.