SPAR has several projects on the ballot for voters in November. Parks would be upgraded with new equipment. Community centers would be repaired and spruced up. And one big item included with the SPAR projects is the demolition of Fairgrounds Field.

Director Shelly Ragle talks with us about the critical needs she has on her wish list that are included in the bond issue.

Shreveport Convention Center Roof & Repairs
Projected Cost: $3M
The Convention Center is the citizen's single largest investment. It is an economic engine for Shreveport. Reinvesting in the Convention Center is a reinvestment in Shreveport's economy. This project invest in a new roof for the Convention Center, as well as carpet upgrades and entry feature enhancements to ensure the Convention Center continues to attract business to Shreveport.

Municipal Auditorium
Projected Cost: $1M
The Municipal is another economic driver for Shreveport. Together with the Convention Center, they have a combined annual impact of $106 million and generate $4 million in tax revenue for the city. This project leverages historic tax credits to repair the Municipal’s ceiling to stop further deterioration of the facilities and ensure the Municipal continues to be an active facility.

Citywide Playground Improvements
Projected Cost: $3.75M
SPAR has not replaced playground equipment since 1998. The average cost to build a new playground that is surfaced for safety is $150,000. This bond proposal makes a huge quality of life investment in our city parks, allocating funds for much-needed playground equipment replacements.

Airport Park Outdoor Recreation & Building Upgrades
Projected Cost: $250,000
SPAR Rec Centers are social hubs for the communities they serve. These centers receive more than 400,000 visitors a year. Airport Park Rec Center accounts for nearly one-fifth of that traffic, bringing in 80,000 visitors annually. This project provides building upgrades and replaces playground equipment.

A.B. Palmer Recreation Roof
Projected Cost: $280,000
A.B. Palmer is a popular recreational facility in the heart of the Cedar Grove neighborhood. It has a metal roof that constantly leaks. SPAR spends thousands of dollars annually on patch work repairs, and still requires buckets to catch rainwater. This project permanently solves the problem by replacing the roof.

Valencia Park Renovations
Projected Cost: $275,000
The Stoner Hill community desperately needs improvements to Valencia Park. This project fills in the abandoned pool at Valencia Park and installs a splash pad for the neighborhood children to enjoy. Splash pads are not only fun alternatives to a swimming pool, but they are cheaper to operate and have less liability. This is an overdue quality of life investment in the Stoner Hill area.

Anderson Island Wendy Park Renovations
Projected Cost: $375,000
The Anderson Island Park renovations are another long-overdue project. The playground equipment and outdoor facilities at the park are outdated and in need of attention. This project replaces the playground equipment and makes upgrades to the facilities.

Shreveport Parks, Recreation, Public Bldgs
Projected Cost: $4M
After personnel expenses and utility costs for public buildings are deducted, SPAR has about $3 million remaining for building maintenance, park management, rec center programming, and swimming pool costs. This project funds repairs and renovations at city properties, like the roof at Ford Park and interior renovations at the Public Works complex.

Chris Hayes Outdoor & Building Upgrades
Projected Cost: $400,000
The Chris Hayes Recreational Center does not meet today's codes. The women’s restrooms do not have stalls. They are just open toilets. The park pavilion was destroyed by a storm several years ago. This project upgrades the building, facilities, and rebuilds the outdoor pavilion.

Sunset Acres Outdoor Recreation
Projected Cost: $150,000
Like many of Shreveport's parks, Sunset Acres playground and facilities are in dire need of improvements. This project upgrades the playground equipment and makes improvements to the Sunset Acres Recreational Center.

Riverview Theatre/Hall Phase 2 Renovation
Projected Cost: $1M
Riverview Hall is home to the Shreveport Ballet, Opera, and the longest continually running Symphony Orchestra in the State of Louisiana, the Shreveport Symphony. This project repairs the HVAC system and the roof, and refurbishes the stage. In short, this project is an investment in the arts that enriches our community.

Sportran Transit Shelter Project
Projected Cost: $1.375M
There are over 800 bus stops in the City of Shreveport. Only 100 are covered. Many people who use public transit to get to work or to a doctor's appointment are exposed to Shreveport’s extreme heat and violent storms. This project remedies that by seeking to pair the $1.375 million with a Federal match to bring the number of sheltered stops closer to 400.

Fairgrounds Field Demolition
Projected Cost: $1M
Fairgrounds Field was built more than 30 years ago. It has outlived its glory days. Many organizations have approached the City about utilizing Fairgrounds Field over the years, but the structural and cosmetic needs make the venue cost-prohibitive. An empty lot would do more to encourage economic development, and it would be a more attractive view from I-20.

CLICK HERE to see all of the bond issue projects.