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This artist’s rendering from Mammoth Sports Construction shows what a four-plex design of ballfields might look like at Wallace Park. Community members can voice their opinion about Wallace Park ballfields by filling out a new survey.

PAOLA — Local residents can help determine the future of the sports facilities at Wallace Park by participating in the Paola Sports Complex Needs Survey.

The survey, which is part of the city’s comprehensive plan update spearheaded by the consulting firm Confluence, is available both online and in print.

The online survey can be accessed at www.surveymonkey.com/r/PaolaSportsComplex, and print copies are available at Paola City Hall and the Paola Free Library.

“Help us to further understand the current and future needs and demand for outdoor youth sports facilities in the City of Paola,” the city posted on its Facebook page with a link to the survey. “We want your input to insure that future projects benefit our community in the best possible manner.”

Paola Youth Sports volunteers have previously met with city officials and presented options for sports facility improvements that could be funded by a portion of Paola’s half-cent sales tax that was renewed by voters in November 2019.

The volunteers have worked with Mammoth Sports Construction based in Meriden, Kan., to come up with some proposals.

One option presented is to construct a four-field complex including lights, full field turf, scoreboards, batting cages, bleachers, backstops, dugouts, bases and all applicable field design elements.

The total cost of that option would depend on the size of the fields, but the estimate is $2.5 million for 200-foot specifications, $2.7 million for 210-foot and $2.8 million for 220-foot.

Another option is to use a spread configuration, which includes a full build out of three fields but leaving Major Field alone except for adding field turf. The estimated cost of that plan is $2,270,121.

City officials also know, though, that a portion of the sales tax revenue needs to be used to repair and update the Paola Family Pool, as well as make street improvements.

The survey is designed to gather community feedback on the sports facilities at Wallace Park and how members of the public think the money would best be spent.

The questions cover a variety of topics, including what sports children currently are playing and whether or not an improved Wallace Park Sports Complex would receive community support.

Senior Managing Editor Brian McCauley can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or brian.mccauley@miconews.com.

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