County approves capital improvement projects |

County approves capital improvement projects

by Steve Weissinger

Over the past several months, Douglas County has completed, started or approved a number of capital projects. Each of these adds to the quality of life enjoyed by the residents of Douglas County. I want to take the opportunity to highlight a few of these projects.

With the recent completion and re-opening of the park building located in the Topaz Ranch Estates General Improvement District, South County residents can take pride in this $220,000 remodel project. This represents the county’s ongoing commitment to the maintenance and enhancement of our park and recreational facilities.

Another significant investment is the recent groundbreaking of Kahle Park Phase II at Lake Tahoe. A summer afternoon drive to Lake Tahoe over Kingsbury Grade will allow for a close-up view of this $2.2 million project. The construction will include a raised running track, expanded weight room as well as indoor volleyball/basketball courts. The gymnasium addition will total 13,500 square feet. This enables Kahle Park to move from primarily a good weather facility to a year-round recreational facility.

Located off Pinenut Road, the sheriff’s department can be proud of the newly opened Douglas County Shooting Range. It took a combined effort from parks and recreation, private citizens (specifically, Greg Lynn Construction) and state grant money totaling $50,000 to have this come to fruition. I believe the facility will provide the avenue for sheriff’s deputies to sharpen their skills in addition to providing residents of the county with a safe place for target practice.

The expansion of the Douglas County Library continues to move forward. When the project is complete, close to a million dollars of improvements will be in place. This work includes a new roof for the existing building, expanding the library service area by approximately 3,500 square feet to provide more room for collections and better access into the facility, all to accommodate a growing number of patrons. A state grant totaling $156,000 rounds out funding for this project.

During the budget process, your Board of Commissioners voted to begin construction of a new fire and paramedic station in the Gardnerville Ranchos. Design and construction will commence in July, with completion in April 2000. This facility will provide a quicker response time to South County, in addition to enabling three advanced life support ambulances to be on call 24 hours a day. Total cost of this project is estimated at $820,000. This money will come from the 5-year construction reserve account set aside for capital projects such as this.

As the Summer Family Concerts in the Park take place, a walk south on Esmeralda Avenue in Minden will provide the opportunity for a close up look at the CVIC Hall expansion. This historic building remodel and face-lift is a benefit to the entire county. A team effort between the Town of Minden, Douglas County, Community Development Department and a state grant equaling $161,000 makes this project a reality.

A quick rundown of the aforementioned list of projects totals close to $4.5 million. As one of your five Douglas County commissioners, I will continue to monitor and scrutinize the effective and efficient use of your tax dollars. Whether those dollars are associated with state grants, TOT (transient occupancy tax) monies or construction reserve accounts, it is our goal to ensure their use to the benefit of Douglas County.

n Steve Weissinger is a Douglas County commissioner for District No. 1, the Gardnerville Ranchos.