Stephenville councilors could make waves Tuesday night when city leaders will discuss and possibly take action to approve a recommendation from the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board regarding the proposed aquatics center.
Members of the advisory board met April 24 to review several design concepts from the C.T. Brannon Corporation and devise a recommendation to forward to the council after the firm revised the initial plans following a town hall meeting last month.
“The final recommendation that the parks board is forwarding has been revised many times through numerous meetings and from the info they received from the town hall meeting back in April,” said Drew Wells, director of community services for the city of Stephenville, adding he is pleased with the progress on the proposed project.
Although details of the plans will not be released until Tuesday night’s meeting, Wells said the advisory board ultimately wanted to forward a plan they were pleased with. “They sought to find out what kind of minimum project we can be comfortable with on opening day that would be adequate to serve the community.”
Wells says the conceptual design to be presented is a “fully developed plan, kind of what they’re terming as a master plan that can be implemented in several phases,” which would allow the council to approve one of several options to fall within budget.
“The parks board was conscientious and mindful that this needed to be a plan that could be multi-phased so that we could have options available to us, and to try to do it in an economical way,” said Wells.
Bryan Ziegler, design engineer with the Brannon Corp., said that on Tuesday the latest drawings will be shown to the council along with some preliminary budget numbers to ask council “is this something you want to do and where do we stand?”
Wells, who has had an opportunity to review the conceptual design options, and says the “plans are great.”
“The comments we heard, we being staff and the parks board, the night of the town hall meeting … some of those comments that were received that night were considered and it’s evident by what will be in the plan that is presented to council,” said Wells.
“We’ve been working on the plan to try our best to include some of the thoughts and ideas the folks had at that meeting,” said Ziegler. “We’re working on a master plan for the park with some rough budget numbers and will present it as a phased project that can be built over time to give the community what they’re looking for.”
If the recommendation receives approval of the council, Wells says the authorization to move forward will allow staff and Brannon Corp. to continue with the plans and specifications of the project in order to go out for bids.
“That’s when Brannon will go from a vague concept to getting the actual detailed info about the specs in order to put it out for bid this summer,” said Wells. “The time frame we’re looking at is in order for us to be open May 2009, it really needs to be in construction by September or October. That would give us plenty of time to account for weather and give us enough time to have it open by next May.”