The Paducah City Commission is pushing discussions on how to proceed with the stalled Shultz Park renovation project. The move comes after commissioners heard cost-reduction options at last night’s meeting.
The Paducah Riverfront Development Authority requested the commission’s input after a second round of over budget project bids came in last month. PRDA Executive Director Steve Doolittle presented four cost-cutting options to commissioners, the first of which would move forward with the project as bid at nearly $8.453 million. The other three cut various parts from the project like boating infrastructure or land components like soil, grass, sidewalks, and lighting. If the city drops the dock and boating infrastructure or significantly reduces those aspects of the project, it will forfeit the 910,000 Boating Infrastructure Grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
PRDA Chairman Bruce Brockenborough said the project should move forward as proposed and as bid.
“Anything less than option 1 is not a real project,” Brockenborough said. “We are talking about a strategy that is building regional tourism. There is a certain element of if you build it, they will come.”
Much of the discussion centered around a variant of option 1 that would bring the cost down to $7.91 million. The City has a little $5.15 million in grant funding for the project. The Commission must decide soon as the bids are only valid through November 6.