Denison Happenings

By: Dwayne Wilder
Denison Happenings 2017 The city of Denison is in various stages of several major projects as of the first month of 2017. The following is an update on each project. Texoma Health Foundation Park: According to Denison City Manager Judson Rex, the design phase for the park is 95 percent complete. “It’s almost done,” he said. “(Landowner) Tom Johnson is doing dirt work now.” Some of the activity area will be ready for use in late 2017 with the sports fields ready for season play in early 2018, Rex said. The park includes walking trails, softball and baseball fields with concession stands, soccer fields and restrooms. New City Hall: The new Denison City Hall will be ready for move in by late spring 2018, according to Rex. Architect David Baca is finishing up work while a construction manager for the project should be chosen in February. The new facility will be in the former Bank of America building on Main Street and will combine all city services in one location. Chestnut Street Repaving Downtown: The entire eight block length of Chestnut Street downtown is being redone. The location is significant as it is the last location of a brick street in Denison. City workers and volunteers have removed the bricks, which are now at the city’s Residential Collection Station. “The Denison Rotary Club will sell them to help finance the new park improvements at Forest Park,” explained Rex. “This will include a splash park and new playground, which will open sometime in 2017.” The work is needed due to the replacement of a major waterline the city has been struggling with for years. After several other options to save the bricks were considered, the city decided it was best to take them out. According to Rex, there will be a new street with gutters and a sidewalk. “A major improvement,” he added. Central Ward Buiding: The fate of the former Central Ward School on Morton Street will come down to a federal court case, Rex reported. The current owner of the property went to state district court when the city voted to demolish the building; and when he lost, he filed the same case in federal court. “Once the state supreme court kicked it out,” explained Rex. “He filed with the federal court. We don’t know when it will be heard, but we feel it will be the same result.” If the federal court rules against the owner, the city will proceed with the demolition, Rex noted. Home building permits: Rex announced that 2016 was a record breaking year for single family home permits. “It was the most for any city in Grayson County,” added Rex. Street Work: According to Rex, the city of Denison will start a $2 million ‘repave’ for many Denison streets in 2017, which is funded in part by a $1.5 million community development block grant awarded to the city in late 2016.

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