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Officials evaluate public interest in Mud Island River Park in deciding whether to update

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Officials are deciding how to proceed with the ailing Mud Island River Park based on demonstrated public interest, Memphis River Parks Partnership officials said Wednesday.

The "Gulf" area looked nearly abandoned, as officials had drained all water from the play area after algae took over.

Officials from the Memphis River Parks Partnership said the park had fallen into disrepair and it would take $20 million to get it back in shape.

They don’t know if it's worth it.

“Last year when we had the monorail operable, not many people rode the monorail. If we keep putting money in something and people don’t use it... We want to make sure the money we’re using gets the most impact," Jamal Boddie said.

As a result, Boddie said they’re testing out new programs and transportation options. They opened the parking lot to increase accessibility and encourage people to bike or even rent kayaks from across the river to access the park.

They're also installing a performance deck for a new summer concert series and re-opened a restaurant at the park.

“It’s a little amount of people here I feel like it should be open to every body and a lot of people should come down here because it’s nice!” said Aaliyah Williams, a student at Memphis Business Academy.

River Parks Partnership officials say they will wait and see if people respond, before deciding how to proceed with updates.

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