Star City is getting a pricy renovation

9 Oct

Star City better be ready for some new flowers and trees, because next Tuesday and Wednesday, Edith Barill Riverfront Park in Star City will be under construction.

On Tuesday, the plants that grow along the lower river bank will be trimmed, and the trees in front of the pavilion will be removed. In addition, the large rip rap on the lower bank is set to be completely placed, along with a top layer of rock to serve as a barrier for the soil and mulch. The aged memorial plaques will also be replaced by new ones.

On Wednesday, Star City will plant four new memorial trees along the rail trail, among other plants.

The project will run from around 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

The plants, though, are rather pricey. Combined, the trees and plants will cost a little over $7,000. Meanwhile, the entire construction is planned to cost around $20,000.

But, residents of Star City shouldn’t worry. The funding isn’t exactly coming out of the wallets.

Thankfully, Star City had a talented grant writer. The grants total around $15,000. A portion of the budget will come from of the Convention and Visitors Bureau fund that helps with tourism and recreation.

Mary Wimmer, the woman that brought the completed plan to the Star City Council Meeting, is in three organizations that is designing the plan. She is the organizer of Morgantown Area Paddlers, on the board of the Upper Mon River Association and Projects Committee Chair for the Morgantown’s North Rotary Club. She is also the talented grant writer. 

In an interview, she said that this project is something that the city has been working on for a while, but is happy to finally see it up and going. She believes it will be good for Star City.

“It’s going to bring people to the area,” Wimmer said. “We get more people coming to the park, so it’s going to benefit the stores in the area, but it’s also going to provide a wonderful, beautiful park- not the eroding riverside that was there.”

She isn’t wrong. In an article by Conservationtools.org, parks can boost business and encourage people to live there, thus encouraging people to eventually buy houses. Over time, the positive outcome could possibly give the city more money in return.

So, maybe, $20,000 isn’t a bad investment for Star City.

This project is reliant on volunteers from the community. They range from the Morgantown Rotary Club, WVU, Star City members and possibly high school students from the area.

“The nice thing about this is, is that it’s a huge corporative process,” Wimmer said. “There are a lot of people involved, a lot of volunteers involved, a lot of organizations involved, and everyone’s been working together. It’s really just a wonderful thing to be involved in.”

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