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updated: 2/19/2011 11:37 AM

Dundee Twp. parks endorses design for new rec center

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  • A rendering of the new Dundee Township Park District's $13.2 million recreation center that will be build on Randall Road, near Route 72. The district is in negotiations to lease a portion of the 47,000-square-foot building to the Dundee Township Library District.

      A rendering of the new Dundee Township Park District's $13.2 million recreation center that will be build on Randall Road, near Route 72. The district is in negotiations to lease a portion of the 47,000-square-foot building to the Dundee Township Library District.
    Courtesy PSA-Dewberry

 
 

The Dundee Township Park District has finalized design plans for its new west-side recreation center that will include fewer amenities than the one on the east side.

On Wednesday, the park board went with constructing a $13.2 million building on Randall Road near Route 72 that will join a nearly 800-acre campus that includes the Randall Oaks Park, golf course, petting zoo and a baseball complex.

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The new center, designed by Elgin-based PSA-Dewberry, will feature a double gym, indoor track, fitness center, preschool and other classrooms. The district is also in the midst of negotiations with the Dundee Township Library that would allow the library to open another branch within a $700,000 wing workers would add onto the building.

Library leaders are reviewing costs that involve leasing the space, staffing it and filling it with furniture and equipment. The library would use the roughly 5,000-square-foot space until they built their own free-standing west-side branch, Director Roxane Bennett said. The library is supposed to make a decision by the end of March before the project goes out to bid.

"The west side of the library district is very underserved," Bennett said. "I would expect in the long run we would need to build a separate building -- this won't be a permanent arrangement."

Unlike the 22-year-old east-side facility, the new, 47,000-square-foot center won't offer day care, an indoor pool, racquetball or a whirlpool.

"Those were amenities that we really couldn't afford at this time," Park District Executive Director Tom Massomer said.

The park district is using Build America Bonds from the federal government that include a 35-percent rebate on the loan's interest. The district agreed to finance the project with a 25-year loan to share the burden among new people moving into the township, Massomer said.

The construction comes as a result of a 2008 community survey in which residents ranked a west-side recreation center high among projects they wanted the district to tackle. The district's aim is to accommodate the growth west of the Fox River, while easing crowding at the east-side center. Today, roughly 62,000 people live in the township, versus the 39,000 who lived there in 1989 when the first center opened, Massomer said.

"This will enable us to loosen the load a little bit at that facility while putting recreation programs and services in closer proximity to those residents who live in the Randall Road area of the community," Massomer said.

The park district anticipates hiring one full-time custodian and 40 part-time employees for the building, once construction wraps in summer 2012. Dundee Township includes Carpentersville, East Dundee, West Dundee, Sleepy Hollow and portions of Algonquin and Gilberts. Construction is expected to start by the beginning of May.

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