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Janesville park could see big changes soon

City council approves $12,000 to hire architect to develop plans

JANESVILLE, Wis. - Janesville park could see big changes soon

Big changes could be coming to Janesville's Traxler Park now that the city council has approved spending more than $12,000 to hire an architect to develop plans for the park.

Traxler Park is probably best known for the Veterans Plaza and the water ski tournaments hosted by the Rock Aqua Jays. The Rock Aqua Jays have been in Janesville for more than 50 years.

Joel Shapiro, the Rock Aqua Jays director at large, said they hope to make the park an entertainment destination.

"We would really like to see some improvements in the park to bring in not only other water skiing events, such as the U.S. Open, but perhaps some X Games events," Shapiro said.

The club hopes to create more of a stadium-type experience in Traxler Park with more parking, better lighting and signing at the park. They would also like to increase the seating area from 3,000 to 5,000 seats available.

Christine Rebout, executive director of the Janesville Convention and Visitors Bureau, said they're excited the city is taking steps to create a plan for the park.

"Improvements to the park could allow us to host events like the disabled national skiing tournament or the U.S. Open. There is huge potential (for) multi-day events that will create great economic impact," Rebout said.

Rebout estimated the annual events already hosted at the park bring in $4 million in revenue. They're hoping the upgrades will make Traxler Park one of the leading entertainment and tourist attractions in the area.

Shapiro said they will work with city leaders and other groups who use the park to create the master plan in the next 3 to 6 months. Once that happens they can start looking at funding and how to implement the plan in the next three years.

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