The Pella City Council discussed a facility needs assessment at their meeting Tuesday.

As part of a presentation, a review of proposed future projects for all city facilities was given, including the Pella Community Center. Two key options were considered for the future of community services: a renovation of the current building, or construction of a new, 47,000 square foot facility near the Pella Aquatic Center.

According to Short Elliott Hendrickson, Inc., renovation would cost approximately $10.3 million, but not all accessibility issues could be addressed–however, the updates would significantly enhance uses in the facility. New construction would cost approximately $14.5 million, but requires acquisition of land from the Pella Community School District. It would potentially include two gymnasiums, one large community meeting room, and new city council chambers. Both options would likely require a community bond referendum with 60 percent voter support for funding. All findings were based on assessment of current space and feedback from several focus groups, and are initial projections — actual cost estimates and design would require an engineer to design and develop a site plan.

Other details were given about a proposed reconfiguration of City Hall to accommodate the development of a proposed telecommunications utility, in which the first vote is scheduled for an engineering services agreement at the July 16th meeting. Additionally, a proposed additional 5,000 square feet of space for the Pella Public Library was also discussed, with more space needed for children’s programming, meeting rooms, storage, and staff work areas. Long-term plans for the city’s public safety complex included a proposed shared Fire/EMS building, as well as renovation of current buildings for the Pella Police Department — a project that should be considered in the next 10 years, and could cost $11.4 million.

The proposal also addressed a new, 15,000 square foot shared electric/telecom facility to accommodate operational needs of both departments, costing an estimated $2.3 million, with an additional space for cold storage for electric department needs as an add on option, adding $1.5 million to the potential construction. Additionally, a new Public Works storage area was discussed, recommended for completion in the next two years and estimated to cost nearly $1 million.

Find the full report by clicking here and stay tuned to 92.1 KRLS for updates. Council is tentatively scheduled to hold a potential special work session about the future of those facilities on August 13th, with more specific direction and phasing to be discussed.