A Utah National Guard engineering unit will do rough grading work for roads and an area where three buildings will be constructed at the Veterans Memorial Park, the Utah Parks and Recreation Board was told.
Frank Roberts, a Utah Parks and Recreation Division engineer, told the board, which met recently in Salt Lake City, that grading of the site, near 170th South and Camp Williams Road, will begin in February by a guard unit in Springville.Roberts said the guard has agreed to transfer more than 7 acres of additional land for the memorial park and cemetery. Authorization for the transfer will be part of legislation presented to the 1989 Legislature. With the additional land, the memorial park would total 32.5 acres, which would provide for about 25,000 to 28,000 grave sites.
Roberts and Parks Division Director Jerry A Miller said drawings for the entire project are being reviewed by a federal agency that will provide 50 percent of the total cost of $1.3 million.
Miller said the federal agency has asked for additional information on about 10 items, including staffing and equipment requests to maintain the park, accessibility for handicapped people to enter the chapel, size of the parking lot and chapel, and adjacent property.
Roberts said Kevin C. Scholz, a Springville architect who is providing his services free, hopes construction on a park chapel and the administration and maintenance buildings can begin in early spring.
But Roberts said that will depend on adequate money to let a contract for construction. Miller said the federal money will only be reimbursed as state and local funds are spent.
Ben Russo, a member of the Utah State Memorial and Cemetery Board, said that group and the Utah Military and Veterans Affairs Committee will cooperate closely with the Parks Board. He said fund-raising efforts are within about $150,000 of the total amount needed for the project, and "contributions are coming in every day."
Miller said a sexton for the cemetery, to be operated by the Parks Division, will not be hired until after Jan. 1. Preference for the position will be given to a veteran with skills as a cemetery sexton. A recommendation on a person for the position will be presented to the Parks Board at its Feb. 9 meeting, Miller said.