Mayor Pete Land and the City of Crown Point are pleased to announce a $2.81 million grant from the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation, which will help fund the revitalization of Sauerman Woods Park.
During his State of the City Address Tuesday night, Mayor Land provided a brief recap on the project, which began in late 2022. The stormwater improvement project will address long-standing flooding issues on the southeast side of the city by upgrading stormwater capacity and improving drainage.
Work began in partnership with the Little Calumet River Basin Development Commission, which contributed $2.6 million toward the improvements.
Over the past year, Mayor Land and city staff have worked on designing the new amenities at the park, including an all-inclusive playground, six sand volleyball courts, six pickleball courts, two piers overlooking the lake, a large open-air, covered pavilion and a 9-foot wide, illuminated walking path around the lake, which will feature historical monuments designed by the Friends of the Veterans Memorial Parkway.
The $2.81 million grant from the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation allows the City of Crown Point to include all the aforementioned amenities and construct a new skatepark on the Sportsplex campus.
“We really wanted to include everything. I want this to be a destination park,” Land said. “Thank you to Bill Hanna and the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation for helping us bring another destination amenity to Crown Point. The City of Crown Point would not be the city it is today without your support.”
The City also ushered in a new era for Legacy Fields at the Crown Point Sportsplex.
When former Mayor David Uran took office in 2008, he began developing the concept for the 95- acre sports complex. Uran's vision shaped the Sportsplex, which is why Land and the City of Crown Point are pleased to announce the new name of the complex: Legacy Fields at the David Uran Sportsplex.
“As you can imagine, building something like that was a massive undertaking, to say the least,” Land said after showing a video highlighting the new turf infields at the Sportsplex. “There were a lot of talented, passionate people who saw the vision and said, ‘We can do this.’ They did it for people of all ages. Yes, it’s youth sports, but we also have adult leagues there.
“The Sportsplex put us on the map for youth sports. It’s a gem in the City, as we all know. The leader and the driving force behind it was Mayor Uran. It probably would not exist — at least not as it is today — without Dave’s vision. So, it’s my pleasure, ladies and gentlemen, to announce with the Legacy Fields name remaining, the Crown Point Sportsplex will be named the David Uran Sportsplex.”
The City will continue to honor the contributions made by Dean White and the White family toward the completion of the Sportsplex by maintaining the Legacy Fields name.
Uran, who was not aware of the complex renaming, was speechless following the announcement.
“If I could, I would put my entire 14-and-a-half years — my staff, the residents, the business owners — on that marquee with me,” Uran said. “Thank you for entrusting me with this. Thank you to the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation. We had a dream, we had an idea, and now look at Crown Point.”