Shawnee council to consider mail-in ballot election for voters to approve funding for proposed community center

Leah Wankum - February 11, 2019 11:36 am
Shawnee Community Center
A rendering of the proposed community center in Shawnee.

The Shawnee council tonight will consider financing details and plans for a proposed community center. If approved by the council, the measure will go out to a mail-in ballot election in which Shawnee voters decide whether to finance a community center through a property tax increase.

The proposed community center would be located at Woodland Drive and 61st Street.

The project team, including Perkins+Will, Project Advocates and J.E. Dunn Construction as well as city staff, will present information on the proposed community center during tonight’s meeting, including facility amenities, construction costs, staffing and operational costs and estimated costs, including an ordinance and resolution for bond issuance and the mail-in election.

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The ballot language would appear as follows:

“Shall the following be adopted?

Shall the City of Shawnee, Kansas, issue general obligation bonds in one or more series in an amount not to exceed $38,000,000 to pay the costs of the design, construction, furnishing, equipping, operating, and financing of a new community center at West 61st Street and Woodland Drive within the City, including park amenities, site work, and indoor recreational and aquatic features, together with all related improvements, all pursuant to the provisions of K.S.A. 10-101 et seq., K.S.A. 12-1736 et seq., K.S.A. 25-431 et seq., Article 12, Section 5 of the Constitution of the State of Kansas, and Ordinance No. 3251 of the City?

The current design of the proposed community center is a 67,707-square-foot indoor facility featuring:

  • Indoor aquatic center with a recreational pool, lap swimming pool, splash pad (sprayground), and hot tub
  • Two court multi-activity gymnasium
  • Indoor artificial turf fieldhouse
  • Fitness center with cardio machine and free weights, and a stretching and open workout area
  • Two group fitness studios
  • 1/12 mile indoor walking/jogging track
  • Multipurpose classrooms
  • Indoor playground and party rooms
  • Child sitting
  • Locker, family changing rooms and lactation room

The city released the following renderings for the proposed community center:

Shawnee Community Center
A rendering of the rear of the proposed community center.
Shawnee Community Center
A rendering of the indoor aquatics facility in the proposed community center.
Shawnee Community Center
A rendering of the turf fieldhouse in the proposed community center.
Shawnee Community Center
A rendering of the indoor playground in the proposed community center.

The council tonight will consider four items related to plans for a community center:

  • A cost not to exceed $38 million for the proposed community center
  • A mail-in ballot election asking Shawnee voters if they approve issuing general obligation bonds to pay for the proposed community center
  • An ordinance to issue general obligation bonds in the amount of $500,000 to finance initial operating costs
  • A resolution calling for the special election as prescribed by the Mail Ballot Election Act

If approved, the mail-in ballot would be delivered to voters by May 1. Election day is May 21. And if voters approve the ballot question, final design plans are expected to begin in June, with construction to begin in March 2020.

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