Splash Pad in Pine slated to open by mid-summer - PineCreek Journal

Splash Pad in Pine slated to open by mid-summer

Thursday, December 5, 2019 | 12:01 AM

The cold months are just beginning, but Township of Pine personnel are already thinking ahead to warm weather and sunshine.

They’re targeting mid-summer for the opening of a new splash pad in Pine Community Park where children of all ages will be able to cool off and have fun outdoors in the summer.

“We’re really excited,” said Joni Patsko, director of parks and recreation for the township. “We think it’s going to be a nice feature for our park and our community. I feel like it’s going to get a lot of use, and there’s that connection to the community and chance for people to come out with neighbors and friends. We’re looking forward to it.”

Vortex Aquatic Structures will be designing Pine’s installation. There will be a lot of interactive and accessible features with various fountains and sprays and there will be different sections tailored to different ages of children, Patsko said. Some of the designs will include butterflies, frogs, pine trees and other elements that tie in to the natural environment of the park.

All in all, it will include roughly 40 components in a space near the soccer fields.

The project was included in the township’s most recent comprehensive plan, said director of finance Jan Kowalski, but had been ruled out in recent years because of the cost.

The cost of the project is expected to total about $750,000, including $300,000 for the equipment plus the cost of site preparation.

“But none of it is taxpayer money, which is really nice,” Kowalski said.

The township was awarded a Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources grant of $250,000, with the help of State Rep. Mike Turzai, to help build the splash pad. That grant was key in making the project feasible, Kowalski said. The rest of the money, she added, will come from the township’s recreation fund that has been accumulating over the years and comes from fees from new development and residential building permits.

Patsko said they’re still discussing exactly how and when the splash pad will operate and other details, but it will be available to the whole community and will not be tied to community center membership.

“Part of the grant requirement was that it be available to everybody,” Kowalksi said.