The town has hired a landscape architectural firm to design passive recreational space on 25 acres of town-owned property along Sturgeon Point Road.

The Town Board last week agreed to contract with Audubon Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying & Landscape Architecture of Amherst to design the first phase of the project, known as Sturgeon Point Bluffs.

Evans Planning Director Sandra Brant said the town are anxious to get the design completed with hopes the site work can be completed by the end of the year.

The town received a $300,000 state grant for the project several years ago, and in January issued a negative declaration for the project, which means the improvements aren’t expected to adversely impact the environment.

The property is just east of the Sturgeon Point Marina, which includes a small section on a bluff overlooking Lake Erie.

It’s one of two parcels purchased from Erie County for $1 after sitting in limbo for years. The other parcel is roughly 28 acres set back from the lake and wedged between Sturgeon Point and Larkin roads.

In other recreational matters, Russell Manguso Sr., crew chief for the Evans Parks Department, will retire Feb. 27, after nearly 40 years with the town. Manguso worked his way up to crew chief in 2008, after starting as a part-time laborer in the Parks Department in 1973.

During his time as crew chief, Manguso oversaw a number of park improvements, including revitalization of the Nettlecreek Park playground and capital improvements to Town Park.

Also this week:

• The Town Board will hold a work session at 6:15 p.m. on Wednesday in Town Hall, 8787 Erie Road.