Project will create county park along Patriot riverfront

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Over the years, the annual spring floods have taken more and more of Patriot’s riverfront. Residents have expressed concerns that one day the street and the homes along the riverfront would be washed away.

In the past few years, the Town of Patriot has stabilized a small portion of the riverfront by applying rock to the most severely endangered areas. It is the desire of the Patriot Town Council to stabilize the rest of the town riverfront.

To accomplish this goal, the Town Council authorized the creation of a Parks and Recreation Board.

The Park Board has been working with Strand Associates, Inc., an engineering firm of Columbus, Indiana, to complete a pre-engineering study for the multi-phase project. Items being considered include:

– Riverbank Stabilization.

– Riverfront Enhancement, including a walking trail.

– Dr. Elwood Mead Memorial and seating area.

– Boat Dock.

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This study will be presented to the Patriot Town Council this Tuesday, April 10th, at 7 p.m. at the Patriot Town Hall. The public is encouraged to attend.

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The Patriot-Posey Parks and Recreation Board is also managing another new and exciting project.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers abandoned the Patriot Boat Ramp several years ago. Due to neglect, the ramp silted in and gradually became unusable. For some time, the Patriot Boat Ramp appeared to be a dumping ground.

George Miller, a Patriot citizen and advocate, has been leading an effort to maintain the appearance of the property with the hope that someday it would belong to Switzerland County. To this end, George Miller worked with the U.S. Government in an effort to obtain the Patriot Boat Ramp property for the community.

George Miller’s vision became a reality in January of this year when the National Park Service deeded the property to Switzerland County. At that time, the County Council, the County Commissioners, and the County Park Board authorized the Patriot-Posey Parks and Recreation Board to manage this project as well.

Currently, the goal of the Park Board is to develop the ramp area into a new Switzerland County Park. The board is working with VS Engineering of Indianapolis to develop the pre-engineering report. Items being considered include:

– A boating ramp.

– A boat dock.

– Shelter houses with public facilities.

– A fishing pier.

– A walking trail.

– A paved parking lot.

When this study is completed, it will be presented to the County Council, the County Commissioners, the County Park Board, the Patriot Town Council and to the public.

Members of the Patriot-Posey Park and Recreation Board are: Roy Boling, Vern Waltz, Dan Back, Jill Hutcherson, and Sherry Ogden. George Miller is the special advisor to the board.