The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says the final piece of financing is now in place to allow them to being construction on the state’s first “destination park” in southern Iowa. Arnie Sohn is the project manager for the Honey Creek park that’ll be located on Lake Rathbun.
Sohn says the “destination park” idea was to provide all the things you find in a typical state park plus some additional places to stay and other recreational activities. At Honey Creek that includes a lodge, golf course and indoor water park. The facility will also include family and group cabins, paved multi-purpose trails, hiking/nature trails, boat ramp, boat-docking facilities, and an upscale R-V campground.
Sohn says they hope to get construction going soon. He says the first phase involves shaping and grading the golf course, installing the water supply and electrical systems, along with site leveling for the lodge. Sohn says it’ll take just over one year to get the new park built.
Sohn says they’re shooting for a grand opening on Memorial Day of 2008 if they’re able to get some work done this fall. Sohn says this could be the prototype for future Iowa parks. He says that’s been the thought as they’ve gone through a lot of planning to get this first park rolling. The Iowa legislature approved three million dollars in funds that’ll be matched with four million dollars in private money to cover the cost of the roads and utilities.
The legislature also approved a bond package of 28-million dollars to fund the construction of the park. The D-N-R says the bonds will be paid off with revenue generated by the development.