The Rockford Park District has recommended selling or leasing Magic Waters, consolidating ice rinks, and closing pools, while reinvesting in neighborhood parks and aging infrastructure, in an effort to restructure and cut costs, at a meeting on Tuesday.
The Park District made several recommendations to the Board of Commissioners regarding areas to add, reinvest in, or eliminate, based on feedback they’ve solicited from the community since March of this year.
At the top of their reinvestment options, the District recommended reinvestment in neighborhood parks, community partnerships, aging infrastructure and next generation for cultural inclusiveness
It was suggested that they add investment in trails, create or enhance destination parks and trending programs to increase revenue opportunities.
Recommendations to cut costs included: consolidating two ice rinks into one; selling or leasing Magic Waters, or, if not, to continue to explore options while operating; suspending the Forest City Queen in 2019, while seeking partnerships for funding; explore privatization of Trolley Car 36.
Recommendations for the future of golf in Rockford included: closing Alpine Hills Golf Course in 2019; exploring reuse or privatization of Eliott Golf Course; increase fees; increase park champion.
Officials recommended the possibility of closing Eliott Golf Course and one additional course in 2020, based on community support.