Archived Story

Promote partnership

Published 10:44am Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The city of Austin is once again benefiting from partnerships.

Austin Public Schools is offering to convert an existing baseball diamond and build a new softball field at Todd Park for the city of Austin, in order to provide Ellis Middle School’s eighth-grade baseball team a field of its own. This strikes us as an excellent idea, as the project uses existing capital project funds and doesn’t raise costs to the taxpayer.

The school district needed another field, as construction on the I.J. Holton Intermediate School would only replace three of the four fields Ellis used to have. District officials will set aside $100,000 in funding from the $28.9 million bond referendum moneys used for the new school and a Woodson Kindergarten Center expansion. All the city has to do is maintain the fields, which shouldn’t increase city maintenance costs, according to Park & Recreation Director Kim Underwood.

This is a win-win situation for everyone involved. Austin’s schools get an extra baseball diamond to use for extracurricular sports, the city gets another softball field for residents to use, city costs don’t go up, and the project is already paid for through the 2011 bond referendum, a side effect of building a new school. As Vision 2020 kicks into gear, more local organizations will have to partner in creative ways, and we hope these partnerships will be as smooth as this one.

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