BG Veterans Building may be rehabbed or replaced PDF Print E-mail
Written by HAROLD BROWN Sentinel City Editor   
Wednesday, 28 August 2013 09:48
Extensive rehabilitation or replacement of the Veteran's Building at City Park is being considered by Bowling Green's Department of Parks and Recreation.
"The kitchen dates to the 1970s, the restrooms are not handicap accessible, the floor needs to be replaced. The building is a near 100-year-old remnant of the old fairgrounds," Dr. Michelle Grigore, director of parks and recreation told the park board Tuesday night.
The structure is one of the few remaining projects on a largely completed list of 2005-2015 Master Plan Tasks. Grigore said the building is a popular and affordable rental and serves as a "rainy day" backup for summer programs, but needs lots of attention. She noted the block building has cracking problems, leaks in the roof and support beams that are sagging.
"Poggemeyer Design Group put a $500,000 cost on upgrades two years ago. If we are going to spend that kind of money we need to look at some other alternatives," Grigore said.
She plans to gather information on 2013 costs for rehab and replacement, then come back to the board and then seek public input. The money is not available in park funds, she said. The board will hold its Sept. 24 meeting in the building.
The building is has two rental areas, the largest (south end) is often used for reunions and wedding receptions. The kitchen is between the two rooms, as are the restrooms. The northern room is considerably smaller.
For many years the building has served as a backup location for Memorial Day programs in the event of rain. She said veterans groups seldom use the building otherwise. It has been many years since the BG American Legion Post regularly used the building.  One of the Sunday Concert in the Park events this summer was held in the large room because of rain.
Grigore said adding air conditioning in a rehab or new building would be a good idea. "The building serves a valuable purpose for us. We are working on a scenario for the building."
The board also:
• Approved a $40 per hour rental fee for the skatepark at City Park. The facility would be rented to nonprofit groups holding competitions and exhibitions and also be available for rentals such as a birthday party.
• Discussed the possibility of establishing a penalty for anyone who contaminates a public pool. Action was deferred until staff and the board can finish a review of the first season with the new pool, including how to make sure staff is available to keep the pool open the last two weekends in August.
• Received a request to help with the Sept. 27 Wine and Cheese Social and Auction sponsored by the Bowling Green Parks and Recreation Foundation. Tickets for the event at Simpson Center are $40 each. Proceeds will go toward a new fundraising campaign that will be unveiled that evening. Items for the live and silent auctions are being accepted. Interested persons should call 419-354-6223.

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