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North Bend in midst of planning veteran memorial

Plans for a new North Bend veteran's memorial are taking form, with the city's William H. Taylor Park near the city's railroad depot the likely site.

City Administrator Duncan Wilson said the idea for a memorial had been in the back of his mind for several years before he presented it to council this year. The council directed Parks staff to put together a concept.

After looking at all the parks in the city, Senior Planner Mike McCarty said the memorial would have to be on public property, be a contemplative quiet place and close to downtown North Bend.

With Torguson Park's active nature, EJ Roberts Park's residential focus and Gardner Weeks Park's non-downtown location, William H. Taylor Park seemed the most suitable, according to McCarty.

However, McCarty emphasized that no decisions or allocations have been made to fund the park yet.

"Let's figure out what we want to do once the council decides what they would like," he said. "Then they'll appropriate funds for the conception."

Wilson said the project will need to involve more residents if the community wants to "do it well and (have it) accepted by all."

"Anytime you have something this important to the community, you have to open it up to other ideas that come in," Wilson said.

Stakeholders in this project include North Bend Parks Department, city council and local veteran's groups.

A limited budget in 2009 may cause delays.

"We had a small budget for Centennial projects in 2009 so there's no carry over in 2010," Wilson said.

With no specific budget provisions for the memorial project, the council have to take it up independently in 2010 to reallocate funding from the council in the future.

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