LAWRENCEVILLE -- One of Gwinnett's oldest and most established parks will get a major makeover.
Commissioners approved a $7.3 million contract with CRS Building Corporation Tuesday for an expansion and renovation of Rhodes Jordan Park, located in the county seat of Lawrenceville.
The work includes some restoration of the park's lake and the construction of a one-mile paved trail and boardwalk around its perimeter.
"That's always seemed so logical, but we didn't have access all around the property," said Community Services Director Phil Hoskins, adding that the purchase of several tracts during the last several years has helped with the expansion.
The road that bends around the lake -- which has been a safety concern for years -- will be rerouted, allowing only pedestrian traffic by the lake's edge while taking cars through a new soccer area before coming to the community center and senior facility.
The old picnic pavilions will be replaced, and a new restroom building and parking will be added.
For athletes, the work includes new soccer fields, outdoor basketball courts and horseshoe courts as well as a new pump system to use lake water to irrigate baseball fields.
"This renovation will make Rhodes Jordan Park an even more attractive asset while lowering our long-term maintenance costs," Chairman Charles Bannister said, pointing to other aspects of the project to replace older, deteriorating facilities that would require more upkeep. "Gwinnett County is dedicated to providing a better quality-of-life for our citizens while making every effort to reduce short- and long-term operational costs."
Named for a former mayor of Lawrenceville, Rhodes Jordan Park has served the county seat for decades. The county took over the operations from the city in 1991.
Hoskins said the project is expected to be complete by summer 2011.