Friday, December 08, 2006


Dear Readers,

That “clunk” you heard last Monday was the sound of the Takoma Park Gym dropping to the floor like a lead basketball. The Gymnasium Feasibility Study, which might have been more aptly titled the Gymnasium INfeasibility Study, was presented at the city council meeting.

How bad is it, you ask? Not bad at all, if you have an extra five to eight million dollars lying around you’d like to hand over to the city.

You don’t have that kind of loose change, Dear Reader? Well, neither does the city. People who oversee grants and funding for the state and county already clutch their wallets and run when Mayor Porter comes into view, she says. So, funding options are few.

The feasibility study laid out the costs and issues for three options - the three best of many the consulting architectural firm explored:

• Option 1.5 (high-school size gym on the Grant Ave. side) comes in at $7,712,575,

• Option 3.2 (high-school size gym at the rear) comes in at $8,126,486, and

• Option 1.6 (elementary-school size gym on the Grant Ave. side) comes in at $5,548,885.

If you haven’t been following this, Dear Reader, the Grant Ave. and rear locations refer to sites adjoining the new Community Center. The new center was built around the old municipal building and library. Constructing a gym there was the original idea, but it grew into a multifaceted community center. Grants were procured, construction began, costs were overrun, construction of the gym postponed. Much embarrassment and political heat was generated.

In short - its a touchy point, and these cost estimates make it touchier, if not untouchable. Some councilmembers have pledged to build the gym come hell or high water. The water is now up to their chins, and hot.

Councilmember Joy Austin-Lane was quick to point out that . . . .

continued at granolapark


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has anyone ever told you that you've got an interesting writing voice. I don't agree with a lot of what you write, but I enjoy reading it and even learn a bit! Thanks.

12/09/2006 01:52:00 PM  
Blogger Gilbert said...

Thank you, sara! That makes my day! Not the part about you disagreeing with me a lot (a lot?) - the other bit. Thank YOU!

- Gilbert

12/09/2006 09:42:00 PM  

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