Kenosha County has been tentatively awarded two state grants to further develop the West End Park, known locally as KD Park, Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser announced today.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Knowles-Nelson Stewardship and Recreational Boating Facilities grants will be used to construct the second phase of the park project. This is a total of $672,198 worth of work that includes additional trailer parking, a boat launch, a boarding pier, a multipurpose pier, restroom facilities, and additional parking off Highway KD (352nd Avenue) near the dam on KD Lake.
Both grants involve a 50-50 match of state and county funding.
“These grants from the state will go a long way in helping us further realize our vision for KD Park,” said Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser. “We’ve come so far from just a few years ago, when that beautiful property was padlocked shut. These improvements will make the park all the more accessible for Kenosha County residents to enjoy.”
KD Park, 8530 352nd Ave., is located on the boundary between the Towns of Randall and Wheatland, adjacent to the Village of Twin Lakes.
In 2001, Kenosha County purchased a 234-acre former gravel pit site to convert to a park, which was expanded by 113 acres with Stewardship funding in 2012. The park features rolling topography, a 39-acre lake, wetlands and remnant oak savannas.
In 2016, Kenosha County received Stewardship matching funds to complete Phase 1 construction of KD Park’s parkway, parking lots, and storm water management features, allowing visitors to access the park and its hiking paths and lake.
Construction on the Phase 2 work is expected to begin in 2018. These enhancements will improve access to the lake and its recreational amenities, including fishing, scuba diving and non-motorized watercraft activities.
KD Park has other park improvement projects planned for 2018, including the restoration of 12 acres of prairie and almost a mile of new multi-use path.
Supervisor Dennis Elverman, chairman of the County Board’s Public Works and Facilities Committee, said the continuing development of the park is the result of much work by county Parks Director Matthew Collins and his staff, the county executive and members of the County Board committee that oversees parks.
“It’s been identifying the grants – there’s been a lot of hard work and a lot of patience, because that was needed,” Elverman said. “We have not had a big pile of money to spend on that park, but we’ve slowly, methodically identified what people wanted, and we’re getting it done.”
Kreuser thanked State Rep. Samantha Kerkman for her strong support of the project.
“This project has been several years in the making,” Kerkman said. “And now, to see where it’s going as these new amenities come in, it’s very exciting.”
KD Park currently has a fenced, off-lease dog exercise area located off Highway F (Bassett Road) in the southeastern portion of the park, along with more than four miles of maintained hiking trails, picnic areas, fishing and cross-country ski trails.
The KD Park masterplan highlights the importance of creating a Sustainable Living Park that emphasizes environmentally conscious planning, development, and maintenance of this park.
For more information on this grant award, please contact the Kenosha County Parks at 262-857-1869 or visit our website, parks.kenoshacounty.org