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Published August 30, 2011, 10:05 PM

EGF Council Moving Forward With Sherlock Playground Rebuilding Plans

EAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - The East Grand Forks City Council had a special meeting Tuesday night to move forward with the rebuilding of Sherlock Forest Playground.

EAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - The East Grand Forks City Council had a special meeting Tuesday night to move forward with the rebuilding of Sherlock Forest Playground.

Construction week is approaching and quotes for the playground materials needed to be approved.

Rebuilding efforts at Sherlock Park will begin on September 19. Bids for equipment have been approved and the city is ready to move forward. Insurance will pay for most of the new playground, but improvements and additions won't be covered.

"But that will be provided through the community foundation, and the donations have already come in generously from the community to cover that cost. So I don't anticipate that the city itself will see an increase there," East Grand Forks City Administrator Scott Huizenga said.

The playground will be a little bigger and a fire truck will be added. The old playground had wood chips, which is where the fire originated in May. The new playground will use rubber mulch instead.

"So trying to think well we don't want to have this happen again, we thought this would be a way to prevent that," East Grand Forks City Council President Craig Buckalew said.

But the rubber mulch will be much more expensive. The national safety standard calls for four inches of the mulch, but the new playground at Sherlock Park will have six inches of rubber.

"We feel that even if the kids are playing and move some of the mulch around that there's still going to be adequate protection so that we can keep the kids safer," Buckalew said.

The cost of the new playground is about $200,000. Many local companies put in bids for construction materials and the whole effort has been supported by the entire community.

More volunteers are need, though. At least 300 each day for a week.

The $200,000 price tag doesn't cover the cost of labor.

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