The Edmond City Council approved a supplemental appropriation this week for the renovation of the Downtown Community Center for $300,000. This week’s 5-0 vote was to provide office space for the Building Services Department.
The city council also accepted the bid for the Downtown Community Center Renovation Project from L5 Construction in the amount of $510,000.
“As a reminder — the reason we are doing this — we ran into a very difficult situation with the lack of office space in the current facility,” said Larry Stevens, city manager. “And just as one example, we’ve got engineering people stacked on top of each other, and it’s not conducive to a good working relationship. It’s also not conducive when we need to add additional staff and they see those working conditions.”
Mayor Dan O’Neil, who had asked to delay the vote, said the overall $700,000 is significant since the city is issuing bids for potential private development to replace the Downtown Community Center.
“I hope we do replace that building, but in the meantime, we’ve got to work someplace,” said Nick Massey, city councilman.
Councilman Josh Moore said it would be nice to have the city’s building department and engineering in the same place.
The initial $400,000 estimate funded by the fiscal year 2019-20 general fund was a best guess estimate from the city staff before building inspections occurred, said Jim Smith, assistant city manager.
“The design that was approved by the council in 2019 was $42,000. We later did an amendment that was approved by council for $12,000,” Smith said.
Inspections revealed a structural problem with what would be the floor to a new room. Asbestos was discovered and removed, and a water-damaged wall needs to be addressed, Smith said.
The lowest bid for IT and phone installations, furniture, design and construction was $510,000 for the 5,044-square-foot building improvement space. A small kitchen will be built next to the auditorium with service to the renters, Smith continued. City may utilize the kitchen for upcoming events.