MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

November 29, 2013

Dog park, trail will bolster city

Muskogee’s parks system is about to get even stronger.

Plans for the construction of a dog park and a recreational trail along the banks of Coody Creek will move forward with the award of federal funds approved for the project.

City officials applied for a $200,000 recreational trails grant, but the award was capped at $160,000 because of the availability of funds. Parks and Recreation Director Mark Wilkerson said the difference will be offset with dedicated funds from the city’s capital improvements program.

Few towns Muskogee’s size have such a strong trail system. Officials have explored expanding the Centennial Trail for years with several different options.

The Coody Creek Trail project is the latest step.

The first phase of the Coody Creek Trail project will begin at Centennial Trail and follow South Seventh Street toward Coody Creek, where it would turn southeast toward U.S. 64. At that point, the trail would parallel the highway to where it crosses the creek.

A trailhead — an area featuring parking spaces, benches, a drinking fountain and other amenities — will be built where South Second Street converges with Madison Street. Wilkerson said a 5- to 10-acre area owned by the city near the planned trail head is being eyed for a dog park.

The dog park would be Muskogee’s first, and would be a great addition to the parks system.

This project further enhances Muskogee citizens’ quality of life, makes Muskogee even more attractive and will increase property values around the trail project.

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