A shut-down Mesa school is being transformed into a multi-million dollar park and recreation center.
The first phase of Eagles Park is set to open in September, according to city parks director Marc Heirshberg.
"This gives us an opportunity to provide much-needed recreation indoor programming space for the community," he said. The community center is being built inside the former Mesa Junior High School gymnasium. It, and an outdoor shade structure, were saved from demolition. The park carries the name of the school’s mascot, the eagle.
The second phase includes four multi-use fields, walking trails and playgrounds and is planned for completion by September 2018.
Tania Armenta was a student at the school the final year it was open.
"We called each other the last of the best," she said, adding that the school’s demolition and construction of the park has been bittersweet.
“I really feel like it’s something they need,” she said. “I always see kids out here playing in the streets and stuff.”
The city received a $3-million federal grant to help fund construction.
See the plan here.