CHAMPAIGN — Both park districts in Champaign-Urbana will each be getting a $400,000 state grant after Gov. Pat Quinn this week announced more than $12 million in park assistance throughout Illinois.
In Champaign, that means park officials can complete the development of Sunset Ridge Park in the Boulder Ridge subdivision. In Urbana, it means residents will be able to enjoy another water feature coming to the Crystal Lake Park Family Aquatic Center.
Without the grant, the completion of Sunset Ridge Park "would have been put off until future years," said Champaign Park District Executive Director Bobbie Herakovich.
That means the northwest Champaign park will get a skateboard area, soccer fields and goals, and a backstop for a baseball field. Officials will also regrade the area, which will provide a sledding hill during the winter months.
Phase one of the Sunset Ridge Park development was completed last year and included basketball and tennis courts, a playground and a pavilion.
With its $400,000 grant, the Urbana Park District will be able to add a "streambed" to the Crystal Lake Park Family Aquatic Center. The streambed feature will look and feel like a real creek, and officials hope it will complement the surrounding Busey Woods and Anita Purves Nature Center.
The money is called the Open Space Land Acquisition and Development grant, and 42 park districts throughout the state received a collective $12,354,600.