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Groundwork begins on senior center expansion

Rhonda Costa-Landers, Appeal Staff Writer

Carson City crews have started work on a nearly $2.5 million expansion of the Carson City Senior Citizens Center.

“City workers will help break up asphalt in preparation for dirt work, grading, things like that,” center Director Janice McIntosh said.

Contracts to build the expansion were approved last week by the Carson City Board of Supervisors.

Construction managers Metcalf Builders Inc., who received and opened bids, recommended the city award 20 contracts to individual trade contractors. Eighteen of the contractors are from Northern Nevada, and two are from Las Vegas. The total of the bids for the expansion came in at $2.4 million. Metcalf will continue to oversee the remainder of the project.

“It’s been a long road coming,” said Supervisor Richard Staub, liaison to the senior center. “It started two, three years ago. We basically had to do an about-face and start completely over. Meanwhile, the center continues to grow.”

Expansion work was halted because initial architectural plans went more than $300,000 over budget. After securing Hannafin/Darney Architecture in Carson City, new plans were approved in September.

“I have personal experience with Metcalf Builders and I’m confident we have a good plan put together by a good architect with good funding and building manager. It’s been a long time coming,” Staub said.

Original plans were to expand the center to a two-story facility. The city purchased an elevator for that plan. The elevator is now for sale.

The project is expected to be completed in about 16 months. The expansion is more than 14,000 square feet, putting the total space of the center at 31,000 square feet.

The expansion is on 4.48 acres of donated Bureau of Land Management property. Former Sen. Richard Bryan, D-Nev., helped provide the land to the city for use for senior services. It will include extra parking spaces.

The two buildings will be connected with a hallway. A few stairs will be on one side and a ramp for the disabled will be installed. The hallway leads to a courtyard with a sitting area and a fountain. It also includes a brick memorial area in honor of late Supervisor Jon Plank.

McIntosh said plans allow for the courtyard to be used for breaks, fund-raisers and as a multi-purpose area.

The addition will be the site for all activities at the center such as exercise groups, games, dances, art classes and fund-raisers. It will have a pick-up and drop-off area with a portecochere. The existing building will be used for administration, kitchen and dining room.

“It’s very exciting it’s finally happening,” McIntosh said. “I’m elated, and on the other hand, the work has just begun for all of us.”