WALKER – If you like to walk, Walker will have something for you, whether you have two legs or four.
Work is underway at Sidney Hutchinson Park to move two ballfields and a walking path is taking shape so residents can enter the park from Ball Park Road.
And the fence posts are up for what will be an off-leash dog park, Mayor Jimmy Watson said Wednesday. Right now, there is a gate near the car entrance to the park from Ball Park Road, but it is locked.
Anyone entering through the gate has access to all the ballfields and there were problems with vandalism, Watson said, requiring the gate be locked.
The walking path that is being built will have a fence on both sides, so no one can get onto the fields, he said.
Fields 1 and 2 are being moved so the walking path wraps around south of where they will be relocated. A bridge will cross the canal from the ball park area and link up to the existing walking trail on the east side of Hutchinson Park.
“You will be able to walk completely around the park,” Watson said.
City employees are doing the work, the mayor said.
Chief of Operations Jamie Etheridge had told the City Council recently that the project should take 30 to 45 days, depending on the weather.
Meanwhile, on the eastern edge of the park, near the pond that hosted the state Department of Wildlife & Fisheries’ “Get Out and Fish!” event on Saturday, are a set of fence posts.
The posts mark off what will become a dog park for pets to exercise, socialize and run off the leash. Watson stood where the entrance to the dog park will be and explained how pets and owners will enter into an area with a concrete slab.
Once that gate is closed, the owner will open a second gate to one of two areas, for small-breed or large-breed dogs, he said.
“This enclosed area with the gates will keep dogs from getting loose if they get away from their owners,” Watson said.
Once the two ballfields are relocated, they will be improved like the other ballfields were this summer, Watson said, part of a list of improvements to the park.
Work is also being completed on a restroom facility near the soccer fields, Watson said.