North Waterfront Park plan, funding on City Council’s agenda Tuesday is your source for free news and information in the Wilmington area.

The City of Wilmington presented results Monday of a months-long push for public input regarding a planned park between the Isabell Holmes Bridge and PPD. Image courtesy City of Wilmington.
The City of Wilmington will begin developing a plan for the North Waterfront Park after a push for public input for the planned park between the Isabell Holmes Bridge and PPD. Image courtesy City of Wilmington.

City staff will begin developing a master plan for the North Waterfront Park at Wilmington City Council’s meeting on Tuesday.

The city collected public feedback from citizens on what they want for the 6-plus acre park on the Cape Fear River, and “will now begin developing a master plan for the park that will be used to help seek funding,” Wilmington City Spokeswoman Malissa Talbert said.

During a public meeting last month, city officials presented findings from a monthslong push to receive input regarding the park, slated to be built on 6.63 acres the City of Wilmington purchased in 2013 for $4.1 million. A place for concerts, plays and festivals–and plenty of green space–were among the top picks for the park.

Related story: Concert, green space top picks for planned waterfront park

Between May and December 2014, that input was gathered at meetings, presentations, events, community centers, on an online survey and through social media. The city received feedback from more than 900 people, 800 of whom are Wilmington residents. The majority of those–350–fell within the 30-39 age range.

The results showed overwhelming support for a large lawn area, as well as a venue for performances. Other areas of top interest among respondents are a garden, a splash pad and kids’ play area, room for festivals, art and sculptures and a “natural habitat area.”

A summary of the results is available here.

Also on Tuesday’s agenda:

  • Wilmington Fire Chief Buddy Martinette will present results of the Insurance Services Organization (ISO) examination of the Wilmington Fire Department’s operations. The WFD is one of only a few cities in North Carolina that maintains a Class 2 ISO rating. The rating takes into consideration the community’s water distribution system, 911 center communications, the fire department’s staffing and equipment and its ability to utilize these resources at the scene of a fire.
  • Council will consider a resolution accepting the Create Wilmington Comprehensive Plan Draft Growth Factors Report and Draft Foundations Report, as the first two components of the Create Wilmington Comprehensive Plan Process, which was compiled after 18 months of public engagement. These two documents are available here.
  • Council will consider an agreement with HealthSCOPE Benefits to administer the city’s self-funded insurance plan and provide access to the Cigna network for healthcare services for city employees, retirees and their dependents. BlueCross BlueShield of NC currently administers the city’s insurance plan, but a competitive bid process revealed that, based on current numbers, the proposal submitted by HealthSCOPE would provide a savings of more than $144,000 a year.

The meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 102 N. Third St. The full agenda can be viewed here.