- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 4, 2014

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - A Fort Worth park that was closed due to possible structural damage on a section near the Trinity River could be renovated and reopened by 2016 after an engineering company found no serious problems.

City leaders, assisted by a business and development advocacy group, are moving forward with plans to update Heritage Park Plaza, which closed in 2007, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (https://bit.ly/1krlzFC ) reported.

An engineering firm’s structural assessment of the 112-acre park found no significant safety problems. Concerns had been voiced that the Trinity River bluff was shifting and that this could affect a concrete overlook, catwalk and stairs.

“It was great news,” Melissa Konur, planning director with Downtown Fort Worth Inc., said Monday of the report. “We can move forward.”

Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives is the arm of Downtown Fort Worth Inc. that provides a funding pathway for charitable, educational and public-purpose activities. It will ask landscape architects and others to propose how to restore and improve Heritage Park Plaza, including estimated costs, with the aim to reopen the main plaza in 2016, Konur said.

The Fort Worth City Council approved $1.5 million in a recent $292 million bond election to cover basic repairs. About $500,000 in private donations have been pledged, according to Downtown Fort Worth Inc.

Engineering firm Freese and Nichols last summer completed a yearlong structural assessment of the park, as well as a soil and tree survey. The $100,000 study was funded by the Amon Carter Foundation, the Sid Richardson Foundation and Streams and Valleys, a nonprofit dedicated to preserving the Trinity River.

Greenscape Pump Services of Carrollton, a specialist in commercial water feature construction and consulting, is considering possible repairs to the park’s fountains. Fort Worth’s water department is expected to replace a leaking water line that runs through the park later this year, the newspaper reported.


Information from: Fort Worth Star-Telegram, https://www.star-telegram.com

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