Grovetown officials are planning to expand the city's recreation facilities at Liberty Park by constructing the city's first community center.
The city of Grovetown has plans to build a new community center at Liberty Park on Newmantown Road that will include a gym and meeting rooms.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
The park on Newmantown Road already has a walking track with exercise stations and four baseball fields, but city officials want to add a combination gymnasium and multipurpose building to the ample site.
Mayor Dennis Trudeau and the city council have discussed the project with Studio 3 Design Group PC, the architects for Columbia County's new library and performing arts center. City officials hope the Grovetown building will provide extra space for groups meetings and special events.
"Both areas we have, the back of the senior center and the Lions Club, they are being occupied every weekend with something going on," Trudeau said.
Grovetown was approved $500,000 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax in the last referendum for the building and plans to seek the remainder of funding for what Trudeau said will be a $1 million to $1.5 million project.
Councilman David Daughtry said he is excited to see the project begin because he has been working for the building since he was elected to council more than 13 years ago.
"As far as the city goes, we don't have a place where we can sit 400 to 500 people," Daughtry said.
The city has only four parks - Goodale Park, Liberty park, the Trails at Euchee Creek and a Kiddie Park on Old Wrightsboro Road, said Michael Woods, the city's recreation director.
Woods added that lots of people use the track at Liberty Park and the fields for practice, and Columbia County Recreation Department teams often play games there.
The building city officials have in mind will include an indoor basketball court, some type of fitness or weight room and a few offices and meeting rooms in addition to restrooms, storage and a kitchen, Trudeau said.
The first step is hiring a firm to design it.
"We probably will (hire Studio 3 Design Group), but we haven't made that final decision," Trudeau said. "We checked them out and they seem to be well aware and pretty much informed on how to build community centers because they have built so many of them."
Trudeau expect approval to hire a firm at the next city council meeting on June 14.
After hiring a designer, the council will give the architect a good idea of what they want to do in the building and what they want included which could include a second floor or a stage, Daughtry said.
He is already anticipating the new building's uses, "especially for the Fourth of July," Daughtry said.
"It is 100 degrees on the Fourth of July. It would be nice to move that (celebration) inside and have all your performers up there, especially in an area where you build it to do that."
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