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BOUNTIFUL CROWS OVER BIRD'S-EYE VIEW AT PARK

Niel Jenkins figures one particular pavilion at the city's new park will draw families like bees to honey.

It may be more like eagles to a mountaintop. The view from one of the park's shelters is something nearby landowners have paid $50,000-plus to command. Jetliners pass by at eye level miles to the west."Isn't it incredible?" sighs Jenkins, the city parks director.

Really, there isn't a spot on the 10-acre green space that doesn't afford an inspiring view of the western horizon.

But residents will have to wait until spring to play on the crown jewel of the city's nine parks. Officials plan a ribbon cutting in March or April.

The park is located at 3900 S. Bountiful Blvd. and features the city's only outdoor, full-size basketball court, two sand volleyball pits, a paved jogging trail, four picnic shelters, a large pavilion and a 75-seat amphitheater.

The city bought the prime property from Davis School District almost two years ago for $314,000 and will spend $1.2 million to develop it.

That's led some to call it the "Million Dollar Park." Others suggest "Mile High Park" since its elevation above sea level is almost at the mile mark or "Lake Bonneville Park" for its view of the ancient shoreline.

The front-runner, however, appears to be "North Canyon Park" - the name of the canyon to the east, where large estates are discreetly hidden by oak brush and pines.

Neighbors won't have to worry about park structures clashing with the well-heeled surroundings. Architects plan a stone and stucco theme for the shelters with lots of planters and trees.

"We wanted it to fit in with the area. That's why we've kept as much of the oak brush as possible and emphasized a conservative design," Jenkins said.

Even the name of the children's play area is upscale - the Tot Lot. It will be a 6,800-square-foot area with imported sand and equipment accessible to handicapped children.

Residents have long fought for a park in the southeast part of the city, where little developed green space exists. Last year, they circulated petitions encouraging officials to buy the plot.

Once complete, the park will give the city a total of 170 acres of developed green space. Officials are also planning development of green space adjacent to Mueller Park Junior High School.