Prairie Village council set to consider agreement with YMCA, library on market study for community center campus

Jay Senter - July 12, 2019 11:30 am

The Prairie Village city council on Monday will consider adoption of a memorandum of understanding with the YMCA of Greater Kansas City and the Johnson County Library on fielding a joint market study on a possible new community center campus in the city.

Prairie Village leaders have been in discussions with YMCA and library officials for months on the possibility of a collaborative project that could bring a new fitness/community center and library branch together on the same site. A staff memo accompanying the item on Monday’s city council agenda notes the timeliness of the discussions given the infrastructure needs facing both the YMCA and the library in the city.

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“Currently the YMCA and the Johnson County Library have facilities in Prairie Village. Both have immediate infrastructure needs that could be solved by combining efforts with the City of Prairie Village to reconstruct new facilities in the proximity of Harmon Park,” wrote Public Works Director Keith Bredehoeft. “This possibility could ensure these facilities remain in Prairie Village and also allow for significantly improved services for the residents of Prairie Village.”

Under the terms of the MOU that will be put before the council Monday, the city would allocate as much as $20,000 from its parks funding to hire a consultant to carry out a high level market study, gauging the feasibility of the project, including what amenities are missing in the area and what amenities residents are looking for, as well as how much such a facility might cost and what fees or taxes residents would be willing to bear. The Johnson County Library would contribute as much as $20,000 to the study as well. The YMCA would contribute as much as $10,000.

Officials have been quick to point to the study as the most preliminary step in consideration of a joint project.

“The Market Sustainability Study is the first step and if all three parties determine the data obtained from the survey is positive only then will there be additional agreements for the Community Engagement Evaluation and the Project Design Study,” Bredehoeft wrote.

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