Board of Public Works approves zoo building plans
City banner policy changed
By Kris Leonhardt
MARSHFIELD — On Jan. 3 the city of Marshfield Board of Public Works approved plans for the Wildwood Park & Zoo maintenance building and authorized the Parks & Recreation Department to seek bids on its construction.
The maintenance building was originally designated as part of the city’s 1990 Zoo Master Plan as well as the 2006 and 2014 Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plans. The project was included in the 2016 budget, and the Parks & Recreation Department began work on building and site design and surveying.
“The Wildwood Zoo maintenance building entails the construction of a new building just west of the current Ludwig building,” explained Parks & Recreation director Justin Casperson. “The building will house vehicles, equipment, materials, a kitchen, offices, a workshop, master gardener space, and an animal containment area.
“This is to improve proficiency, and we are hoping to streamline our operations out of four buildings down to one building and create space in the current cougar exhibit to build ADA accessible restrooms and open up that space for the Zoological Society and Rotary Winter Wonderland groups.”
Following Board of Public Works authorization, the plans will now go to the city’s plan commission for approval.
Also on Jan. 3, the Board of Public Works revised the city’s current policy regarding large banners on the Veterans Parkway and Peach Avenue overpasses.
Previously managed by the city, in 2013 the policy was amended to allow the Marshfield Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) to install the banners. The banners allowed local organizations to advertise their events in a highly visible location.
“We did have a program in place since shortly after those bridges opened that would allow for banners to be put up that would advertise community events, but the program became kind of a burden for staff to administer and keep track of banners and applications,” said Director of Public Works Dan Knoeck. “So in 2013 that program was turned over to the CVB to administer, which we thought was a good solution, but they were having the same difficulties of trying to coordinate banners and so forth.”
On Jan. 1 the CVB discontinued operations of the banner program.
“The other factor in our consideration was that most highway agencies would likely say that a banner over a four-lane highway is not a good thing from the perspective of distracting the drivers that are underneath. There are enough distractions on our highways today,” Knoeck said.
The board approved removing the provisions allowing large banners to be displayed on the public right-of-way on the Veterans Parkway and Peach Avenue overpasses.
Only the small banners mounted on the streetlight poles on Veterans Parkway and Central Avenue will be permitted in the city of Marshfield. The CVB will continue to be responsible for the Veterans Parkway poles, and Main Street Marshfield will maintain the banners on Central Avenue.