WEST MONROE, La. (KTVE/KARD) — The Ouachita Parish Police Jury has agreed to spend around $1.1 million dollars aimed at improving the Biedenharn Sports Complex and The Louisiana Purchase Gardens & Zoo.

The funds for this project come from the ARPA rescue plan or the American Rescue Plan Act. Improvements at the sports complex include water and sewer upgrades, improved lighting, turf instillation and repairing the bleachers. These improvements are expected to cost around $892,000.

According to Jack Clampit, vice president of the Ouachita Parish Police Jury, $300,000 will be given to The Louisiana Purchase Gardens & Zoo in Monroe.

“The first phase is going be the Louisiana Purchase. It’s about a $1.1 million dollar project. So we’re going to give them $300,000. They’re going to build an exhibit that is nothing but Louisiana animals and it’s going to be interactive,” Clampit said. “They’re going to have an alligator pit for instance with a feeding deck so you just don’t look at them floating in the water. You can go and feed the alligators. We’re working with the Monroe city officials, Mayor Friday Ellis and his group. West Monroe Mayor Staci Mitchell and her group, and the parish. We’re all working together to improve the quality of life for the residents of Ouachita parish.”

The ARPA funds approved by the police jury could also go toward creating additional outdoor activates.