Where are the pavers?

The new Veterans Memorial Park will be located at the site of the former Cannon Park, northeast of Highway 36 and Margaret Street. (Tim Faklis/Review)

Veteran's committee member provides explanation

Tom Trost has received some inquiries from people who have purchased engraved pavers for the new Veteran's Memorial Park, which will be built at the site of North St. Paul's former Cannon Park. 

Up to this point, the Veteran's Memorial Park Foundation has sold 450 pavers and 34 group pavers, and received monetary contributions of just over $103,531. Residents from around the Twin Cities and as far away as California have bought pavers. 

Beyond local donations, $100,000 in state funding for the project was approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Mark Dayton this spring.

The North St. Paul American Legion Post No. 39, VFW Post No. 1350, North High Air Force JROTC and the city are cooperating on the project, which will be a public memorial to military veterans and their loved ones.

Where are they?

The answer: still in the works, but progress is being made, said Trost, a member of the park committee. The foundation submitted $18,500 to pay for 445 engraved pavers in late July. More recently, the special granite required for the project was ordered for $24,170. 

Once the manufacturer completes work on the engraved stepping stones, members of the committee are going to "meticulously" check each brick to make sure everything is correct, Trost said. From there, the pavers will be stored until they're ready to be placed into the ground. 

"Certainly, my wife wouldn't allow those in my garage," Trost joked, adding that pavers will be kept on city property.

The bricks will be engraved with the names of veterans and the U.S. military branches and installed on land at the northeast corner of Highway 36 and Margaret Street.

While it's still unclear when construction will begin, Mayor Mike Kuehn recently mentioned the spring of 2015 as a good guess. 

"This is very, very exciting," Trost said. "We're finally moving forward. ... The city manager (Jason Ziemer) and I have gone through the pieces, and he's put together a good spreadsheet that identifies who is going to be responsible for what."

"We're just excited as well; I think the community's excited," Mayor Mike Kuehn said. "I think it will be wonderful to see not only the project break ground in the spring, but be fully completed two or three months after that. I think everybody is going to be very proud of that project."

Tim Faklis can be reached at 651-748-7814, at tfaklis@lillienews.com, or on Twitter @tfaklisnews.

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