Amenities proposed for new center
With two years to go and $16.7 million to spend, county officials asked residents to take a look at the list of amenities proposed for the Douglas County Community & Senior Center.
The county will spend this year selecting a builder and developing plans for the center, located next door to Herbig Park and across Waterloo Lane from Lampe Park.
At least half of the three-dozen people attending Thursday’s workshop on the center, which is expected to be completed in fall 2014, could be considered seniors, but there was a smattering of younger people, and even some children in the audience.
Rather than developing plans to be put out to bid, the county is using a design-build process, in which builders will be told how much money is available and they will present plans for the center as part of the process.
Community Services Director Scott Morgan said the process would allow the county to weight proposals based on how much local labor is included in the proposal.
“We want to keep as much of the money here as possible,” he said.
The source of the money is already established in the form of the county’s nickel capital projects tax supplemented with the utility operator fee and some room tax money.
The projects tax was used to expand the Douglas County Jail and with that project’s completion, the center became the next proposal.
“The county has a way to pay for the Douglas County community and senior center that will not raise anyone’s taxes,” Morgan said.
While the center would have cost less to build when first proposed, Morgan said the interest rate is essentially locked in, which will save the county money on the bond.
Thursday’s meeting was to determine if the county was missing something residents would like to see in the center.
“We want to take another crack at the apple to see if there’s anything we’re missing,” he said. “We want you to let us know.”
While many residents offered suggestions for construction of the building, there were a few requests for services, including establishing recycling of the kitchen waste and soundproofing the different areas.
Gardnerville resident Marion Barritt suggested increasing the size of the kitchen so that the 280 people who receive meals on wheels can start getting the hot version again.
Senior Services Advisory Council Chairman Bob Cook said proponents needed to support everything they do in planning the center.
“There should be a reason for everything we do, and a least 10 of them,” Cook said.
Former county commissioner and Gardnerville resident Barbara Smallwood said designers should look at the prevailing winds when picking an entrance.
“I’ve been blown into a couple of places,” she said. She also suggested a walking area to Lampe Park.
• Dining room, multi-purpose room, seating capacity 500-600 people
• Gift shop to be operated by volunteers and Young at Heart
• Reading and resource area for socialization, education and WIFI access
• Senior and adult services, administrative offices to house the existing senior services staff, arts and crafts including wet and dry rooms.
• Commercial kitchen suitable to support other nutrition programs.
• Public transportation offices
• Senior Daycare Facilities and Community Health
• Storage and outdoor common spaces includes a separate entrance
• Restroom and storage facilities
• Community Center and meeting rooms
• Meeting rooms
• Warming kitchen
• Part-time preschool facilities
• Shared entrance with the health & wellness portion of the facility
• Storage and restrooms.
• Gymnasium and health and wellness center
• Two regulation basketball court with four regulation volleyball courts
• An indoor jogging track
• Free weights and workout facilities
• Cardiovascular exercise equipment
• Indoor playground
• Shared entrance with community center
• Racquetball courts
• Locker and dressing facilities
• Reception and concession area
• Room for a expansion for one additional regulation basketball court