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Patches of dirt are visible throughout LeClaire Park on July 2 in Davenport.

After further assessment of the fields around LeClaire Park and new grassy spots along the city’s riverfront, Davenport Finance Director Brandon Wright says the city plans to kill a contract that would have spent roughly $475,000 to lay new sod or grass seed. 

The damage to the grass is not as severe as the city previously thought, Wright said during a Tuesday briefing with city officials. He said much of the restoration work can be done in-house instead and for far less money.

LeClaire Park spent weeks underwater amid record-setting Mississippi River flooding. Earlier this month, Parks Director Chad Dyson said the main lawn was completely dead and large patches of weeds have begun to spawn.

The city planned to bid out a work contract for a private company to lay new sod or grass seed in LeClaire Park and other grassy fields in downtown’s Main Street Landing — a combined area that spans nearly 9 acres.

LeClaire Park is a hotspot for city dwellers, Quad-Cities residents and tourists who attend its outdoor concerts and events. Over the past few weeks, several of the big outdoor events have already moved across the river, including the annual Riverfront Pops concert performed by the Quad-City Symphony.  

In June, the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival moved to East Moline because of conditions at LeClaire Park.

Davenport’s fight with the Mississippi River lasted more than three months this season, overwhelming the resources of the city’s public works department. Public Works Director Nicole Gleason in mid-May put the tab for the flood at around $1 million, not including destroyed city equipment and additional money paid to outside contractors. She’s said the final price tag could easily surpass triple to quadruple the costs incurred during a typical year.

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