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Priceville looks at plan, cost to build civic center

Clif Knight

Hartselle Enquirer


Priceville’s mayor, council and park & recreation board received an update on planning for a proposed multi-purpose civic and sports complex from a design-build team at a regular council meeting Mon., Sept. 14.

Gary Owen, vice president of architecture for Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood of Birmingham showed renderings of a preliminary floor plan and Attorney Ken Funderburk of Merchant Capital presented a preliminary project budget.

Proposed is a 66,095 sq. ft. concrete, medal and brick building to be located on a 6.5-acre county-owned parcel at the corner of East Upper River and Bethel Roads. A track and storage area would require an additional 18,700 sq. ft.

The preliminary estimate of the total project cost is $7,648,564, Funderburk reported.

“This is an attractive time to borrow money,” he pointed out. “In today’s municipal money market the interest rate is the 2.5% range on a 25-year bond. Your annual debt service would be about $460,000.”

The project consists of the following components:

•Indoor free-span sports arena with retractable seating which can be configured for basketball, volleyball and tennis courts in a hard-flooring setup, or soccer, football or lacrosse fields in a turf setup (preliminary budget includes hard-floor setup)

•Mezzanine level with three-lane, elevated track and miscellaneous conditioning and storage space

•Indoor batting cages

•Wellness center with separate rooms for strength/weight training, group fitness classes and physical therapy sessions

•Partionable meeting/classroom space

•Restroom and locker facilities

•Facility support spaces, including office/admin. Areas, concession booth and storage rooms

The site includes three points of ingress/egress. A surface parking lot for 85-plus vehicles, pedestrian sidewalks, an entry plaza and landscaped areas.

Mayor Duran asked if it would be possible to sell bonds for longer than 25 years. He was told that is possible but the interest rate could be as high as 3% or more.

Duran said he’d like the debt service not to exceed $350,000 per year.

Jonathan Henderson, finance controller for Encore Inc., presented a financial forecast for the project.

He reported the project would have the potential to generate $845,000 for the city in the first year. Of that amount, expenses would be $718,000, leaving a profit of $126,000.

“We’re looking at a civic center not only as a new service for our residents but as a vehicle to spur business growth, Duran said. “If we had the facility up and running, we’d be happy to break even after the third year.”

The council acted on other matters as follows:

•Approved payment of August bills totaling $105,236.82

•Authorized the mayor to sign the 2015-2016 contract agreement with the Morgan County Emergency Management Communications District

•Appointed Traci DeWeese to the Priceville Park and Recreation Board

•Approved $235 and other expenses for Treasurer Cindy Livingston to attend the Municipal Revenue Officers certification training course in Tuscaloosa Oct. 7-9

•Approved  $295 and other expenses for Town Clerk Constance Childers to attend the Municipal Clerk’s Annual Conference in Orange Beach for election information Nov. 18

•Approved expenses for Mayor Melvin Duran to attend the League of Municipalities Legislative Committee meeting in Montgomery Sept. 29

•Approved $152 to the Decatur Daily for a 2015 Homecoming Page advertisement

•Accepted a $3,170.90 matching grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to purchase replacement protective vests for members and reserve members of Priceville Police Department

•Approved $1,032 to U.S. Mulch Co. for overage on the I-65 beautification area at $24 per yard

•Approved $776 to Temple Inc. for a turn arrow light on Bethel Road.