COLLIER COUNTY, Fla.- It's your money and the city of Naples wants to spend $15 million on a brand new park. Baker Park would be built on Riverside Circle near the intersection of Central Avenue and Goodlette Frank Road. Right now, the city is about $2.2 million short of its proposed budget and has already raised $5 million in private donations. The question is should city leaders scale back or dig deeper into your pockets?
"Give us an excellent park without being extravagant," said Gerry Storch with the community services advisory board.
Storch was part of the group that reviewed plans for Baker Park. He says if city leaders can't find more private donors they should use taxpayer dollars to fund the project instead of taking out any special elements. The 15-acre park designed by architect Matthew Kraygh of MHK Architecture and Planning will boast a cafe, a carousel, a children's splash area and much more.
"Its probably the most predominant park in the city of Naples," said Kraygh.
Ciity Council members started discussing on Monday what could be removed to help keep it within budget. It looks like almost everything is up for discussion, especially those active elements that make it so unique. Storch says its those elements he wants city leaders to protect.
"The city floated a bond issue with floating Fleishman Park," said Storch. "I say what's the problem do it with this park?"
City Council will be discussing Baker Park at their meeting on June 4th.