Dinosaur-themed splash park is one step closer to calling UTPB Park its home

Published: Dec. 13, 2016 at 11:37 PM CST
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We have some dino-might news to share with those who live in Odessa.

A new Jurassic Park-themed splash pad is one step closer to calling UTPB Park its home.

On Tuesday night, Odessa City Council gave Parks and Recreation Director Steve Patton, the go ahead to award the bid for the nearly $3 million project, which includes a brand new parking lot.

At least three times a week you’ll find Gabriel Sanchez and his friend Sergio Quinonez running soccer drills at UTPB Park.

They don’t know it yet, but come summer they’re going to have a new spot to cool down after practice, and the best part is it’s only a few feet away from them.

“Dude! Dang that’s going to be awesome!” both boys exclaimed as they smiled from ear to ear.

Junior League Jurassic Jungle is the name of the future splash park and it’s going to be built just west of the soccer fields at UTPB Park.

“As you go into the spray ground, you’ll encounter a set of ribs, and each rib will either pull water or spray water as you enter into the splash ground,” Patton explained.

Hence the name, the Junior League of Odessa is partially to thank for the dinosaur-themed park.

The volunteer based organization made up of women, donated $100,000 to the City of Odessa to see that the project gets completed.

“Part of our mission is to have community outreach, we are all about bringing families together,” said Lisa Armstrong, the President of the organization.

And part of that mission is to make sure local families have an affordable place to spend some quality time together, which is why you will be able to go down mammoth themed slides and step foot inside a dinosaur rib cage all for free.

The pad will also be surrounded by jumping and dancing colorful water fountains.

But what makes the splash pad even more unique is that all of the water used will be recycled through a newly built pump station.

“Rather than discharge down the sewer, we will discharge into our irrigation pond,” Patton said. “Then, our pump station picks up that water and distributes it out on the park to green up the turf. So all in all, it’s a great method of reuse, all the way from the spray ground itself to making our park green again.”

The city hopes to break ground on the project in March and have it ready by mid-June.