|During the 2016 Budget hearings, the Board authorized the development of a Bear Branch Park Master Plan, which will review all aspects of indoor and outdoor recreation amenities, inclusive of aquatics at the park and across the system. This Master Plan will take into account the current status of Bear Branch Park Pool, closed due to the damage it received from the Spring 2016 rains, and subsequent Texas Municipal League evaluation and potential insurance proceeds. The revised Master Plan and related work by staff will also address the actions taken by the Board of Directors on August 17, 2016 during the 2017 Budget Workshop whereby the Board agreed to allocate funding for the development of an Olympic sized pool at Bear Branch Park, contingent upon several matters, such as but not limited to: The Woodlands Swim Team and The Woodlands Master Swim agreeing to contribute at least $1.5 million dollars to the development of the project; the two teams committing to offsetting at least 50% of the annual operating costs estimated to be $400,000 per year; and all parties entering into related agreements such as a Project Development and Operation Agreement.
The objective of the Bear Branch Park Master plan is to perform comprehensive design and planning services for the Park with the following key points:
A draft of the Request for Proposals has been prepared, which will be revised to reflect a potential Master Plan update schedule:
- Address the communities needs of indoor and outdoor recreation, inclusive of aquatics programming
- Development of a site plan(s) for the Park with new, renovations and remaining areas where parks and other types of recreational facilities should be preserved and/or newly developed, inclusive of parking.
- Identify existing utilities and any future installation of utilities in order to serve park site(s) with cost estimates.
- Include an Olympic sized pool that could be a stand alone / separate pool from a repaired/renovated Bear Branch Pool, or that could be integrated with a repaired/renovated Bear Branch Pool, or other unidentified scenarios on placement, configuration and use.
- Cost estimates for new or renovated amenities, including operational cost and revenue projections. Funding sources (Township CIP, grant funding, 3rd party naming/sponsorships) should be reviewed as part of a funding plans
- Advertisement/Release Request of Proposal - August 26, 2016
- Deadline for Proposals - September 30, 2016
- Approval and Award of Proposal by Board of Directors - October 20, 2016
- Notice to Proceed - November 1, 2016
- Draft Plan Presentation to Township Board of Directors - February 16, 2016
- Final Plan Presentation to Township Board of Directors - March 22, 2017
Also included in the 2016 Capital Improvement Budget is $150,000 which was designated to improve the driveway egress from the Park to Research Forest Dr. and add 40 additional parking spaces to the existing parking lot serving the Recreation Center. Invitations to Bid for this project could be released this fall; or, the Board could consider delaying this project until the Master Plan is completed and consider adding the $150,000 to the overall Bear Branch Park major renovation project.