Southaven will soon get underway on a massive $2.8 million  program to enhance neighborhood parks throughout the city. 

The city approved the low bid this week from Murphy and Sons, which came in much lower than the $3.2 million estimate. The work will resurface walking trails, add new pavilions, add new multi-use trails, and new playground equipment, and is part of a larger, aggressive plan to further improve the city’s parks.

Mayor Darren Musselwhite said the city focused on improving ballfields and other park amenities and adding opportunities for new recreation for residents which generate money for the city in order to bring in more tourism dollars which could be used to pay for enhancements later on in the city’s neighborhood parks. 

Since 2013, the city has invested over $35 million on parks. The city continues to see revenue from its one percent restaurant tourism tax grow. Southaven collected $2.9 million from the tax in 2022 and is projected to collect over $3 million this year.

“This is a great project,” Musselwhite said. “We  spent so much money over the years with our tourism revenue trying to do the improvements to money making things that brought in tourism. And that was smart. Now we are able to get into our neighborhoods to touch other people who may not use the other parks as much. It’s a good position to be in to come as far as we have.”

Musselwhite said the city has been able to make improvements to just about every park that was on the list when the “Pennies for the  Parks” tax was passed in 2010.

“We’ve come a long way and y’all know the battles we’ve been through with keeping the funding for this, but we’ve been able to do it,” Musselwhite said. “So the city is in a good position right now.”

The new list includes:

Cherry Valley Park…resurfaced walking trail & new playground

Brookhaven Park…resurfaced walking trail, new pavilion & new bridge

Greenbrook Lake Park…resurfaced walking trail & new playground

Hal Guthrie Park…resurfaced walking trail, new pavilion & new playground

Summerwood Park…new pavilion

Southern Pines Park…new pavilion & new bridge

Swinnea Park…new pavilion

W.E. Ross Park…resurfaced walking trail

Ross Pointe Farms Park…new 10-ft multi-use trail & new pavilion

Trinity Pointe Park…resurfaced walking trail, new pavilion & new bridge

Plum Point Park…new walking trail & new pavilion

Central Park…resurfaced walking trail with expanded route, new 10-ft multi-use trail connecting Swinnea & Tchulahoma, new pavilion & two new bridges

Snowden House Front Yard Park…resurfaced walking trail 

Musselwhite said in addition to this project, the city will also be adding new rubberized surfaces to several playgrounds and performing general maintenance of playground equipment as needed, which will be funded by our general fund budget line for neighborhood parks.

“We’ve gotten a lot of the big stuff knocked out  and now we are able to get into some of the neighborhood stuff,” Musselwhite said. “It’s really going to be special for a lot of people.”

Construction is expected to start around May 1. 


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