More than $1.2 million will be spent on metro-east parks thanks to an initiative designed to expand outdoor recreation throughout the state.
The Open Spade Lands Acquisition and Development program is part of Gov. Pat Quinn's plan to ensure "that no child is left inside," according to Quinn's recent announcement.
Here are some of the projects that will upgrade parks in St. Clair and Madison counties:
* The City of Belleville will receive $335,000 to renovate South Side Park on Sixth and Monroe streets. The project includes a new playground, an Americans with Disabilities Act accessible fishing pier with solar lighting, softball field reconstruction, a new warning track and padding for a wall behind home plate, bench swings, picnic tables, a restroom building, an extension of the bike trail around the existing lake and parking lot improvements.
* The Village of Shiloh will receive $276,500 to acquire the 32.7-acre Yorktown Golf Course, located in the southwestern part of the village. Improvements will include asphalt trails throughout the course, multi-use trails in a separate area, two acres of native plantings, a pavilion and renovations to the existing restrooms.
* The City of Alton will receive $148,600 to renovate a portion of the historic Riverview Park overlooking the Mississippi River and the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway. The project includes improvements to the existing bandstand, walkway and landscape enhancements, renovations to existing failing walls, a plaza overlook structure, solar powered site lighting, bike racks and a 'grasscrete' driveway access into the park.
* The Village of Bethalto will receive $400,000 for Phase II construction of the 40-acre Culp Sports Complex. Development includes four baseball/softball diamonds, a football field, soccer field, bleachers, restroom facilities, open green space, interior roadways and parking.