Construction on a turf football field at the heart of the in-the-works Ed Reed Park in St. Rose should be ready for use early in the upcoming new year, with a target of 2.5 to 3 months until completion according to St. Charles Parish.
The parish’s Parks and Recreation Department and the Ed Reed Foundation released a joint statement to community that construction is beginning on the first phase of the Reed Park project, which will focus on the new 40X100 turf field. Residents were advised there will be an influx of heavy machinery and construction vehicles over the next few months that could cause some temporary inconvenience.
The park is being built near the streets of Turtle Creek Lane and Preston Hollow Road where Reed, a St. Rose native and Destrehan High School alumnus, grew up. The longtime star free safety for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame earlier this year.
The construction of the park is a realization of a dream of Reed’s, after the park in St. Rose Reed grew up playing at was eliminated in order to build houses. The thought is the park provides access to safe facilities, positive programs and mentors.
To that end, Reed and the foundation hope to use sports as a means to direct children down a positive path. He has credited park athletics among the major influences in his life. He’s referred to himself as a “park baby” when reminiscing about his youth. His foundation directs its efforts at providing opportunities for positive advancement for at-risk youth.
While hopes over the summer were to have the park set to go by October of this year – an official groundbreaking ceremony was held in June – the ball is officially rolling.
St. Charles Parish Parks and Recreation Director Dwayne LaGrange said the site for the field will be raised by 2.5 feet, followed by the field construction.
“The work will be done during normal business hours … we don’t anticipate any work extending into the late evening. Once this phase is completed, we’re hoping the community can enjoy the field as we move forward with the next phase,” LaGrange said. “As of now, this is the only turf field we have from a recreation standpoint. There may be a minor inconvenience with vehicles traveling back and forth in the community, and a little noise associated with this. I’m sure the community is willing to have some minor inconvenience for this beautiful park to be constructed. They’ve been waiting for it for quite a while now.”
He said the parish’s partnership with the Reed Foundation to make the park a reality has been positive and that the park should provide a great outlet for community youths.
“We know this project will have a really positive impact on the St. Rose community … sports tends to capture the minds of kids and provides them with a positive outlet,” LaGrange said. “There will also be a walking path for adults who’d like to take advantage of one of the wonderful amenities of the Ed Reed Park.”
Following the first phase, the construction of basketball courts and a children’s playground are planned.