Covering Louisiana

Apr 6, 2014 5:30 PM by AP

Makeover for Ruston's Railroad Park possible

RUSTON, La. (AP) - Mayor Dan Hollingsworth hopes the third time is the charm when it comes to improvements for downtown Ruston's historic Railroad Park.

The Ruston Leader reports the city's Board of Alderman will be asked Monday to authorize a professional services agreement that could lead to making the park a greener place.

"It used to be a great place," Hollingsworth said. "Now it's a place that has concrete everywhere and the trees won't grow."

The proposed agreement with the Baton Rouge planning firm Tipton Associates is among a number of public works-related items upon which aldermen will vote during their monthly meeting which starts at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall.

Hollingsworth said this will be the third time the city has tried to reclaim the park since a number of dead and dying trees were cut several years ago.

Plans call for removing some of the concrete in the park and the existing trees and planting approximately 30 new trees. Part of the work will also entail digging out much of the soil and replacing it with soil more conducive to growing trees.

The project is expected to cost between $150,000 and $200,000, the mayor said.

"That's expensive, but to make downtown look like it needs to look, and maintain an image, that little park needs to be rebuilt," Hollingsworth said.

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