The latest drawings for a possible Veterans Memorial Park in Orange Township were shown to township trustees Tuesday.
Buzz Foresi, principal at the EDGE Group, presented the new renderings.
“We had a great time designing it and look forward to seeing it come to life,” Foresi said.
The memorial would be near the corner of Orange and South Old State roads, within view of Orange Township Fire Station 362. It would be next to the Historic Township Building, with existing and new shade trees around it.
The pentagon-shaped memorial, called “Heroes Not Forgotten,” features a black granite wall, a white granite U.S. flag sculpture, an evergreen tree hedge, a star-patterned paver plaza, low shrubs, an entry sign, benches, and flag poles for each military branch. There would be a 30-vehicle parking lot next to the park.
Foresi said historic U.S. military scenes could be laser-etched into the granite.
“Really well done,” said Trustee Ben Grumbles after the presentation. “It’s a relief to see it.”
Grumbles said now that there’s a 3-D rendering of the memorial, it will prove easier to raise funds from the public.
The memorial itself would cost $275,000; $45,000 for the parking lot improvements; and $50,000 in “soft costs” (final design, engineering and permitting); for a total of $370,000.
There was discussion about what would be around the memorial. It was felt that a playground might detract from the solemnity of the park.
Trustee Debbie Taranto credited former Trustee Robert Quigley (served from 2010-2018), who is also a veteran, with the initial idea for the memorial. There was also input from local school students, Taranto said.
“Local Olentangy Orange High School student Amelia Dewey originated the design for the outdoor memorial,” states the township’s website. “Matt Croghar and Kyle Benecke, also local Olentangy Orange High School students, came up with the theme ‘Heroes Not Forgotten.’”
Taranto said the memorial is something that will bring the Orange Township community together.
“To see where you’ve taken it is pretty amazing,” Taranto said to Foresi. “We’re all in agreement to move forward with the project.”
Individuals may donate to the Veterans Memorial through the nonprofit Delaware County Foundation, 737 Enterprise Drive, Suite A, Lewis Center, OH 43035. Please note Orange Township Veterans Memorial in the memo line of the check. For more information, visit www.delawarecf.org or call DCF at 614-764-2332.
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.