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County park under development may receive historic name

The former Sammelmann Farm and Homestead site

The park with no name may have one soon. St. Charles County’s 120-acre property, under development between Kisker and Pitman Hill roads, could be “Baltic Creek Park” if the County Council agrees.

The proposed name was submitted to the council at its June 12 meeting and could be voted on at the council’s June 26 meeting.

“I think it’s kind of catchy,” County Executive Steve Ehlmann told the council. “It does say a little bit about the history of the area.”

A small creek flows through the property, but county officials didn’t know its name until they found it on an old map. Ehlmann, who has written a history of the county, also said German immigrants could well have lived in the area, though he said he can’t prove that.

“Baltic Creek Park – obviously it’s your call, but that’s our recommendation to you,” Ehlmann said.

The new park is expected to be completed and ready to open in 2018. The council approved a $6.82 million contract to C. Rallo Contracting Co., Inc. in February for development of the property, which the county bought for $6 million in 2014.

Plans call for the county to intensively develop about 90 acres of what formerly was known as the Sammelmann Farm and Homestead. The property is on undeveloped land in an area with extensive residential development and fewer parks than other parts of the county. Amenities will include an off-leash dog park, two lakes, a large inclusive playground, walking and biking trails, three rentable shelters, a fishing dock, multiple walking trails that cross streams, and a walking and bicycle trail near Pitman Hill Road that will cross Baltic Creek.

The design of St. Charles County’s newest park closely follows input county officials received from residents in a 2014 survey. Residents suggested the park remain as natural as possible with hiking and biking trails receiving the highest ranking, followed by picnic areas, lakes and natural conservation areas.

The park was purchased with money from the County’s Park Fund, a voter-approved local use tax dedicated to park funding. The council makes final decisions on hiring contractors and the plan. Councilmembers had few questions about the plan in October and asked none when they approved the bid from C. Rallo this month.

The former Sammelmann Farm and Homestead site

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