Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include more detail about who is paying for the proposed fountain.
WARSAW — Plans to install a water fountain as part of the North Buffalo Street plaza project were discussed Monday by the city’s redevelopment commission.
Board members reviewed a plan by the city to hire Peerless Midwest, of Indianapolis, to install test pumps to determine water pressure that would be needed to establish a fountain.
Cost of the work was estimated to be $22,100, according to paperwork from the city.
The water fed into the fountain would then be released into the stormwater system. An alternative plan that would recirculate water for the fountain system would require the same level of water testing used for public pools and would cost more, said Plan Director Jeremy Skinner.
The fountain will be part of an expansive plaza along the edge of Center Lake that would include a public art display and seating. A boardwalk would be constructed as a way to tie in the plaza with Center Lake beach.
Cost of the fountain is expected to be about $200,000. Skinner said the system would likely require two pumps.
The fountain will be paid for with money from the Castaldi Memorial Fund through the Kosciusko County Community Foundation, according to a spokesperson for the foundation.
Construction of the plaza was slated to begin this summer but has been delayed until next year.
Skinner was asked why they just don’t pump water from the lake into the fountain system. The problem with that is the potential for the pump to get clogged with debris, he said.
In another matter, the board approved a claim to pay $16,240 for a 0.15-acre strip of property adjacent to the future roundabout at CR 300N and Sheldon Street for right-of-way acquisition. The property had been owned by the Petro family.
Board members expressed concern that the two appraisals for the land varied greatly. One was for $23,550 and the other was for $8,900.
Board President Tim Meyer expressed concern about the differences, saying he didn’t understand how those could be so different. Skinner downplayed the difrerence, noting that there was a similar disparity in appraisals when the city had to acquire right-of-way property for the Husky Trail roundabout a few years ago.
Board member Michael Klondaris asked Skinner if he was comfortable with the appraisals. Skinner said he thought they were “very reasonable” and “very typical.”
He was asked about whether a third appraisal should be sought. Skinner said that would likely drive up the costs.
The board chose to approve the claim for the Petro family.