Treetop Park Tabled on St. Louis County Council Agenda
County residents today are voicing surprise about a GoApe! contract being an agenda item on last night's St. Louis County Council meeting, after a heated exchange of public concerns just occurred about the matter Saturday.
Approximately 55 interested and concerned St. Louis County residents—and even at least one from Illinois—attended an informational meeting Saturday at Greensfelder Park in Wildwood regarding a proposed treetop park being considered to be erected there.
See related article: County 'Goes Ape' to Help Save Greensfelder Park in Wildwood
Reactions from attendees Saturday were intense and aimed at the lack of public notification and engagement about what they perceived to be a "game-changer" regarding a more remote public park traditionally focused on equestrian, bicycling and hiking use. St. Louis County Parks Acting Director Tom Ott promised Saturday that communications would improve. In fact, a signup list was provided to ensure county employees could notify directly those interested in future meetings about the topic. County staffers answered a variety of questions Saturday, and took time to show attendees the actual ravine proposed to be where the treetop park would go.
To the surprise of most Wildwood residents on Wednesday morning, however, the contract the county would enter into with the private company, GoApe!, that would build the proposed treetop park was discovered to be on the agenda of the St. Louis County Council meeting held last night. That act alone prompted a flurry of emails, phone calls and Facebook conversations about what some residents are calling "secretive" and "non-inclusive" county activities on Wednesday.
Editor's Note: I attended Saturday's meeting, and had planned to publish next week a series of articles addressing the multitude of issues that have surfaced regarding this matter, after this week's holiday. However, given last night's agenda item and the amount of inquiries I am receiving this morning, it seemed prudent to publish this initial update to Saturday's occurrence.
Confirming with Jordan Fears, executive assistant to St. Louis County councilman Greg Quinn, R-District 7, action taken in response to Tuesday night's request regarding the GoApe! contract was to put it into the process category called "receive and file." No discussion was held about the matter last night, and no further legislative action was taken.
Return to Eureka-Wildwood Patch today for separate and exclusive article regarding Quinn's personal response and summary of the status of this topic.
Patch also spoke to Ott at mid-day, and will publish a separate article about his update regarding last night's agenda item.
Per typical county practices, the agenda for the next St. Louis County Council meeting should be published on the county's website by this Friday.
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