Plymouth Allots $375K for Possible Third Gym in Creek Center Makeover
The Plymouth City Council once again discussed a possible third gym as part of the Plymouth Creek Center expansion project. The city council Tuesday night voted to approve $374,500 to upgrade mechanical systems that would allow for future gym space.
The city council previously voted to move forward with plans for a $51.6 million makeover of the Plymouth Creek Center. The design plans call for adding two gyms, a walking track, an indoor play area, as well as other fitness and meeting room space. It would add 80,000 square feet to the current 30,000-square-foot facility.
The vote for the additional money was 5-2 in favor. Council member Jim Davis, who voted in favor of the extra money, compared it to “roughing in the plumbing” on an unfinished basement.
“We’re Not Sure If There’s Enough Demand”
Council members who approved the money believe it would make any future gym expansion less expensive.
“Right now, we’re not sure if there’s enough demand,” said Plymouth Mayor Jeff Wosje. “Our staff has said that they believe two gyms would be sufficient at this point in time, but I don’t want to hamstring our ability in the future to do something that if demand increases and shows that we really are over-programming for two gyms, that we need a third gym. That we have capability to do that as well.”
Plymouth City Council member Ned Carroll believes there is sufficient demand. He was in favor of a third gym when it was voted down at the Sept. 24 council meeting. Carroll believes the time for the third gym is now.
“I think this is shortsighted,” said Carroll, who voted against the $374,500. “It’s not that I’m not in favor of the project overall.”
Plymouth City Council member Jim Prom was the other no vote, but for a different reason.
“It’s really a shame we are so late into this process,” said Prom. “This is stuff we should haven been discussing and deciding on very early, setting up for something that’s going to end up costing $10 million five years from now doesn’t seem very prudent in my mind.”
Building a third gym now would cost an additional $6 million ($5 million for construction and $1 million for design). City officials mentioned construction costs tending to go up about seven percent per year. However adding the gym later would require knocking a down a wall and rearranging the walking track, adding extra costs.
Option 2 Struck Down
City staff also gave the Plymouth City Council a second option. That option would have allowed the city to go out for bids and include plans for the third gym. If the council liked what they see with the bids, they could vote whether to support the third gym. But getting a bid for an additional gym would cost an extra $1 million due to design costs.
The city council did not support that option.