Should it be Central Park? City Park? Horse Farm Park? The Horse Farm? Park De Ville? Do we name it after the leaders in our fair city who stepped up to make the deal happen? Or the Save the Horse student leaders who refused to back down? If all goes as planned - and as those of us who've covered this great project since its awfully messy days hope - it'll soon be your park via a transfer of ownership from UL Lafayette to Lafayette Consolidated Government.
So tell us what you think it should be called.
But first you should let your city-parish councilman know you support the plan to turn these rolling 100 acres on Johnston Street into a passive park Lafayette and surrounding residents will enjoy for generations to come.
The deal, which includes an exchange of Youth Park near UL's campus for a portion of the university's Johnston Street Horse Farm property, won the approval of the Board of Supervisors for the UL System last week. A day later, the City-Parish Council heard an introductory ordinance spelling out the terms of the transaction and plans for developing the park. The council votes on the long-awaited proposition July 3.
LCG has already issued and sold $6 million in certificates of indebtedness to purchase the Horse Farm, a funding mechanism the council approved last year. The Johnston Street usable acreage appraised for $6.61 million and Youth Park for $808,000.
The proposed ordinance requires that LCG develop the property as a passive park - no basketball, baseball or soccer fields - within 10 years or return it to UL. The Community Foundation is expected to play a key role in bringing the project to fruition, but the specifics of that role have not yet been defined and/or disclosed.