Whether to name an Eau Claire park after a project recognizing local veterans will be decided this week by the City Council.
The council is slated to vote Tuesday afternoon on dubbing public land along Forest Street as “Veterans Tribute Park” after Monday night’s public discussion on the idea.
The Eau Claire Veterans Foundation, which has committed to building a $2.2 million tribute with a paved trail, monuments, paved gathering space, lighting, parking lot and restrooms, sought approval in March for the name change.
“The application was made, the process was completed by the applicants for the naming of the space,” Weld said.
That included a 60-day period where the city invited people to weigh in on the proposed name. Of the 206 respondents, 87% supported the Veterans Tribute Park name. Seventeen people were opposed to the proposed name and 10 suggested a different name.
Following the survey, people who tend community gardens and rental plots at the Forest Street Special Area spoke out against the proposed names during public meetings. While the the gardens would remain alongside the veterans trail, gardeners and others from the North River Fronts Neighborhood opposed the name because it did not include their role in the park.
Amid the opposition, two groups balked at giving their support for the proposed name for land the city currently just calls the Forest Street Special Area.
Though it is contributing $450,000 to building the veterans trail, the Eau Claire County Board voted 18-8 on June 18 to indefinitely postpone its decision to support the Veterans Tribute Park name.
The city’s Waterways & Parks Commission voted 7-3 against the name change during its June 26 meeting and urged that the veterans group meet with neighborhood leaders and gardeners to discuss it.
Included in the majority of that vote is City Council members Kate Beaton and John Lor, who serve on the commission.
Decisions of those two groups and opinions shared during Monday night’s public discussion will be weighed when the council decides on naming the park, Weld said.
Also during this week’s council meetings:
• Final designs for reconstructing the intersection of Roosevelt Avenue and State Street will be subject to a public discussion on Monday night before the council votes on them Tuesday afternoon. The council decided last month to abandon plans to build a roundabout there, instead opting for other safety upgrades to the intersection that will not require buying private land.
• Haas Sons of Thorp is poised to get a $446,553 contract on Tuesday to repave about 5,000 feet worth of alleyways this year.
• Several groups and individuals are collaborating on a mural recognizing local hockey history in hopes it will become part of the city’s municipal ice arena. Eau Claire Youth Hockey, the Eau Claire Figure Skating Club, Riverside Bike and Sport, Mike Sullivan and Denny Zacho collaborated on the mural and are asking the council if it could be displayed inside Hobbs Ice Center.