The city has turned what most would agree was an eyesore into an attraction. A place that draws people for recreation, but much more may be in the works.
R.E.D Development of Kansas City has plans for a huge project between Sparks Boulevard and the Marina's eastern shore. Sparks officials say it would be more than a shopping mall.
But there were some roadblocks. One was apparently removed today. In Carson City with Sparks officials looking on Governor Guinn signed a bill clearing the way for the city to use anticipated sales tax revenue to finance infrastructure. The bonding mechanism was first created to help Reno attract the big Cabela's project to the Boomtown area. Now Carey says it will make the Marina project bankable. The exact nature of the project...and what shops and restaurants might be included isn't known, but the developer and the city are estimating it could generate as many as 10 million visitors a year.
This project doesn't have clear sailing yet. The marina is in an area designated as a flood plain. In fact, those who were living here at the time will remember the first time it became a lake was during the New Year's 97 flood. After some flood control improvements the Federal Emergency Management Agency is being asked to remove that designation.