Canyon aquatic center still set to open next summer

Canyon aquatic center still set to open next summer
Source: KFDA
Source: KFDA
Source: City of Canyon
Source: City of Canyon

CANYON, TX (KFDA) - The opening of Canyon's new aquatic center remains on schedule now that the city commission has accepted a bid for the project's contractor.

When the commission received the first round of bids, they all came in too high.

A month later the $6 million bond approved in last November's election is still not enough money to cover even the lowest new bid.

The commission accepted the lowest bid Monday evening at $6,037,777.

After adding costs like maintenance and landscaping, the total amount is expected to be around $6,250,000.

That's after city staff worked to cut hundreds of thousands of dollars off the original design plan.

"The only things that we're taking out are really things that weren't necessary," said Randy Criswell, Canyon City Manager. "What would have been neat, would have been pretty, would have maybe had some eye candy so to speak to it, but it's completely unnecessary for function of the facility."

Those include things like fake stone wall coverings, extra locker space, and an elaborate entryway.

Criswell said it is impossible for the project to cost under the $6 million dollars allotted by the bond without "cutting out the fun."

"We still give the voters what they wanted, which was a water park with a lazy river and a zero entry pool... all the things that you need in order to have a facility like this we kept," said Criswell.

The city pledged up to $250,000 to fund what the bond cannot cover.

And staff plans to seek out private donors to sponsor individual parts of the park, like slides and swimming areas.

Even though recalculating bonds put them a month behind, aquatic center designers said it will still open some time next summer.

"We can't control the weather and we can't control those other things, and we have delayed it by approximately a month through this process," said Jon Behrens, Assistant City Manager for Special Projects. "But again it was a good process, and a smart process. So hopefully we can pick that time up. And if we can't, then we'll just open when we open and we'll be ready when we're ready."

The city will now finalize a formal contract and work with the designer to update the center plans with the new budget cuts.

They expect the project to break ground this fall.

Copyright 2016 KFDA. All rights reserved.