Donovan Park pavilion plan put on pause, hope to resubmit plans in 2022

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) –Tuesday morning the Pavilion in the Park board president spoke about the benefits of the pavilion project in Donovan Park and what it could bring to Peoria.

“We have a 1,500 covered indoor seating and 500 seats outdoors on berms that are tiered, so everyone has a straight line of vision to the center of the stage,” said Pavilion in the Park Board President Sara Connor-Jones.

The project has both supporters and opponents even before Tuesday’s speech.

One of those being Corey Goreman, who comes to the park frequently and is concerned about sound from the events at the pavilion and the impact it could have on the park’s wildlife and green space.

“That portion of Donovan Park is one of the most natural areas of the parks. There’s a lot of wildlife. There are owls and everything else that perches up in the trees there in the evening,” said Goreman.

During the speech, it was announced that the board retracted the land-use terms agreement they presented to the Peoria Park District.

They say they made the announcement to allow the Pavilion in the Park Board to discuss with people who don’t know about the project or are against it.

“Giving up green space permanently, probably one of the most beautiful parts of the park, I think, is a fairly significant trade-off that I’m not willing to compromise on,” said Goreman.

“We want to have the time to understand their concerns and say OK, alright, what can we do to make it more amenable for you? How can we gain your support?” said Connor-Jones.

The Pavilion in the Park Board plans to resubmit the land use agreement to the Peoria Park Board at the beginning of 2022.

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