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Budget cuts coming to new park in Boca Raton

Budget has gone from $7-$8 million to $10 million
Boca raton park.PNG
Posted at 9:49 PM, Apr 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-14 00:18:12-04

BOCA RATON, Fla. — There are 32 parks in Boca Raton and the city is in the process of adding another.

To build Wildflower Park and renovate Silver Palm Boat Docks has jumped a whopping $3 million. The new price tag has city council members scrambling to cut the ballooning budget.

"On this piece of waterfront property in downtown Boca Raton, should we have a park or a restaurant? That was the biggest issue of the day," City Councilmember Andy Thomson said.

The city's Wildflower-Sliver Palm Park is in full swing. Construction of a sea wall has already begun.

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But there's a snag. Thomson said the budget has gone from $7-$8 million to $10 million, saying the pandemic's raised prices for contractors, but now he worries the overall cost is too much.

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"The $7 million budget, which was accurate at the time we had come up with it, unfortunately changes as a product of the circumstances," he said.

Council members met Monday, looking to trim those costs -- everything from seating and lighting to the number of trash cans has been considered.

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But not everyone disapproves of the cost. Miles Rich said he's ok with it, hoping the park provides its own value.

"I think it's a great thing," he said. "I think my tax dollars will be put to work. I think it's a long-needed and long-awaited project."

Veronica Adorisio worries that it's wasteful spending.

"I don't think it's a smart thing, because $10 million is a lot of money," she said. "The country is in crisis right now and there are other priorities."

Thomson said the last park developed by the city is the 14-acre Hillsboro El Rio at a cost of $7.8 million.