Kennesaw preparing to move ahead with new recreation center

Kennesaw recreation center renderingRendering of Kennesaw recreation center (courtesy of the City of Kennesaw)

The Kennesaw City Council is set to approve a construction contract Monday for phase 1 of the new recreation center.

According to Parks Director Steve Roberts, the city received thirteen qualification packages, which were evaluated and narrowed down to four by a selection committee. Of the four top-scoring firms, Roberts and Croy Engineering recommend awarding the contract to Gay Construction Company for approximately $7,030,000. The initial proposed contract was for $7,009,984, but Roberts added additional security cameras to the project.

Zachary Buffington of Croy Engineering told the council that if the contract is approved Monday, they could hold pre-construction meetings the same week and implement erosion control measures “pretty quickly.” He estimated the project will take about a year.

The recreation center will be in Adams Park, a 33-acre area with lighted baseball, tennis and softball fields, batting cages and a playground. Phase 1 will be approximately 21,500 square feet and contain two multi-purpose gyms, a fitness area and offices. The funds come from the 2016 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

Phase 2 is dependent upon the 2022 SPLOST passing in November. If that SPLOST is approved by voters, the addition will be 18,200 square feet and contain another multi-purpose gym, a dedicated gymnastics area and a walking track that will extend into phase 1. If the 2022 SPLOST does not pass, the city will have to make do with phase 1.

The phase 1 cost came in higher than initial estimates provided by the city last year. The council is set to approve the reallocation of leftover 2016 SPLOST funds from other projects toward the recreation center to cover the costs of the current design.

“There’s dollars in different places – to push them all under the recreation center to allow us to go ahead and fund what you all recommended we approve earlier,” said City Manager Jeff Drobney.

Improvements to Dallas Street and Watts Drive are complete with $76,000 remaining. There is also $15,000 remaining after the purchase of police vehicles. The largest amount being reallocated is $1,771,000 that was set aside in case the city needed to purchase additional property for the center, but was unnecessary since it is being built in Adams Park.

Citizens may attend the meetings, but space is limited due to social distancing protocols. Overflow attendees will be directed to the Ben Robertson Community Center where the council can be addressed via live stream. The meetings are also streamed on the city’s Facebook page. Public comment can also be made via email at kennesawcouncil@kennesaw-ga.gov. Comments will be shared at the regular session.

Rebecca Gaunt earned a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in education from Oglethorpe University. After teaching elementary school for several years, she returned to writing. She lives in Marietta with her husband, son, two cats, and a dog. In her spare time, she loves to read, binge Netflix and travel.

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11 Comments on "Kennesaw preparing to move ahead with new recreation center"

  1. I will most certainly vote against it. Kennesaw does nothing for their seniors and nothing for swimming. Three gyms! Give it a break….

    • Rebecca Gaunt | July 2, 2020 at 11:44 am | Reply

      At previous meetings, the parks director has stated the intention to use the multi-use gyms for various programs including pickle ball. I believe there is intention to have senior programs of some sort. I know that doesn’t resolve all your concerns, but just wanted to let you know that’s on the table.

  2. Oh joy another indoor athletic facility without a pool. Why does this county hate swimming so much?

  3. For those who want a facility with a pool– go to these meetings and voice your concerns! They represent us, let’s tell them what we want!

  4. Give the tax payers what they want build a pool and have life grades lets up grade while you are spending money do it right the first time.

  5. ronnie robinson | July 1, 2020 at 10:41 pm | Reply

    Bocce Ball, lawn bowling, pickleball are all great sports especially for seniors. It would be nice to have these indoors at the new rec center. Seems thou everywhere is concentrating on having a basketball gym and therefore this one sport is pushed way ahead of anything else! How about expanding your outlook and creating something for ALL AGES !

    • Rebecca Gaunt | July 2, 2020 at 11:43 am | Reply

      At previous meetings, the parks director has stated the intention to use the multi-use gyms for various programs including pickle ball. I believe there is intention to have senior programs of some sort. I know that doesn’t resolve all your concerns, but just wanted to let you know that’s on the table.

  6. Cobb Already Stole Taxpayer Money and Funded The Braves Millionaires' Pit | July 1, 2020 at 11:13 pm | Reply

    What a ridiculous tax giveaway to sports fanatics who are already over-served!

    So, don’t call it a “community center.” It’s a taxpayer-rip-off sports complex in which most residents have NO INTEREST WHATSOEVER.

    Stop these pols’ pet projects. Spend the money on what matters: Police, fire, roads, senior services, etc.

    The sports minority may walk, jog, and jumping-jack all around the city, for free.

  7. William Smith | July 3, 2020 at 8:22 am | Reply

    The county also conspicuously continues to *not* include basketball. I have a neighbor who called in to ask about the lack of basketball goals and was told they didn’t want “that kind of element” at the parks. Hmmm.

  8. Thanks for reporting Gaunt. This is a city project not a county project. It should add value to the homes within walking distance. That will increase taxes and pay for other things. A pool is a very large reoccurring expense compared to a building. I hope Cobb Co gets an Aquatics center near Kennesaw one day. (Replace the mall with one? 🙂 And a large Performing Arts Center. But we are a smaller city with smaller tax income than that affords at the moment. @WillSmith, before Corona, Kennesaw FBC had pickup basketball on Wednesday nights, full Cort, AC, ppl who can play.

  9. Estan construyendo el centro de recreaciones sobre el unico campo de soccer y entonces donde habilitaran otro campo de soccer para que practiquen todos los ninos,jovenes y adultos de kennesaw que concurrian a este lugar a hacer deportes no quierto ni pensarlo que no construyan otro campo de soccer seria muy egoista es mas dentro del centro de recreacion se deberia construir ademas de gimnasios un campo multifuncional para la practica del baloncesto y voleyboll asi como de una piscina, como de un centro de reuniones para adultos mayores, para que puedan relajarse,seria mas productivo y divertido para nuestra ciudad, debemos pensar en todos nuestros ciudadanos en el bienestar general.

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