May 18, 2014 7:29 PM by Akeam Ashford
The Horse Farm is one step closer to becoming a world class park, after official master plans were unveiled today at Party in the Park.
Thousands of Lafayette residents came out to view year-long plans on what they want in a world-class park in the heart of Lafayette.
The event also served as the official fundraising kick off for Lafayette Central Park (LCP). LCP is responsible for the plans, construction and maintenance of the park.
With official architectural plans for the 100-acre property officially laid out, citizens like Mary Dean said she can finally see a space that Acadiana can enjoy.
"They could of built homes in here or townhouses, but instead they decided to build a park," Dean said. "Now it's going to benefit the whole community."
Among the many ideas proposed for the space, plans show two man-made ponds, a two-mile paved walking and running track, a dog park and much more.
Lafayette Central Park (LCP) tried to keep the space as green as possible, said LCP Director of Planning and Design Elizabeth Brooks.
"The real thing I love about it, is we took the natural beauty that exists out here and just really enhanced it," Brooks said. "I just think it's going to be an amazing place for families to enjoy for decades to come."
Brooks said the master plan laid out today is only the beginning phase of the project.
She said the real work begins with raising funds of more than $30 million for the first phase of construction.
"It's a really ambitious goal, but I really feel like this is going to change the community of Lafayette forever," Brooks said. "We're hoping to really build it in phases so we don't have to rope off the whole thing, and it'll be a place people can come and enjoy while we are continuing to build."
Even though residents asked to keep the park a green space, there are plans to include 420 parking spaces so everyone can enjoy the old horse farm.
LCP will take the master plans to the city council June 3 for approval.
Brooks said once city council officials approve the plans, LCP will draw up infrastructure plans.
According to Brooks, LCP would like to begin construction on the park in late fall.
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