New Community Center Options
After much discussion and deliberation, the City Council did not reach consensus to move forward with a community center design at Valley View Park. The Council decided the current proposal for a community center at Valley View Park was not viable at this time, and no formal action was taken. Keep reading
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In 2015, a resident task force recommended the City Council evaluate options for construction of a new community center to better serve the needs of all Bloomington residents. Several locations were considered, including the existing Creekside Community Center site and Bloomington Civic Plaza. The City Council evaluated all options and, in April 2019, directed City staff to develop a plan for a new facility at the Valley View complex on 90th Street between Portland and Nicollet Avenues South—the current site of Bloomington Family Aquatics Center.
Valley View Site
The land at Valley View Park is the preferred location because it is large enough to accommodate the community center being envisioned and it is already City owned. Building a new community center there would allow the City to maximize the other recreation facilities within the park and to address the aging pool facility, which is scheduled for a multimillion dollar replacement in 2026. The new community center would have a possible indoor-outdoor aquatic space that could be used year-round.
Facility Amenities and Community Input
The community center is in the beginning stages of a multistep process that includes planning, design, contract awarding, funding, and ultimately construction. It is estimated that it could take up to four years from the time it is approved before the community center is completed and begins operation. One of the most important next steps in the process is the selection of an architect who will then work with the City Council, residents, staff and other stakeholders to develop the design of the proposed facility. City staff will provide a variety of opportunities for residents and stakeholders to give feedback on the project with open houses, focus groups and more in the coming months. Features and amenities being explored include:
- Aquatics center with lap pool, family pool, indoor/ outdoor integration
- Multiple gymnasiums and fitness center
- Walking/running track
- Outdoor spaces
- Indoor playground
- Multipurpose rooms
Potential Changes to the Valley View Ballfields
The final development will include park and green space, and ballfields. The preliminary plan for a community center at the Valley View site could potentially result in the loss of three ballfields on the Valley View Park site. If fields are eliminated, it would cause relocation of some events, including the portion of the Firemen’s tournament that normally uses those fields. The City would work closely with event organizers to find suitable alternate location(s). The new community center would not impact access to ballfields used annually by the Firemen’s Tournament at Valley View Middle School and St. Bonaventure Catholic Church.
As a part of the Valley View site review, a traffic study will be conducted and the results included in the recommendations to City Council.
Cost and funding
The cost of the project will not be known until decisions about the building design, size, features, amenities, and program elements are finalized by the City Council. The funding source has not been determined. There are several potential sources for funding the construction of a community center including a bond referendum, lease revenue bonds, and charter bonds, as well as the sale of the existing Creekside property and savings.
Exploración de las nuevas opciones de centros comunitarios
Se encuentra en proceso la planificación de un nuevo centro comunitario, el cual estará diseñado para servir mejor a Bloomington. En las encuestas realizadas en los últimos dos años se ha demostrado que la mayoría de los residentes apoyan la iniciativa de un centro comunitario más moderno y completo. El Centro Comunitario Creekside ubicado actualmente en 9801 Penn Avenue South cumplió su ciclo de vida. Una instalación nueva y mejorada proporcionaría aún más oportunidades de desarrollo para todas las edades.
El invierno pasado, después de evaluar las instalaciones existentes de Creekside y Bloomington Civic Plaza como posibles ubicaciones, el Concejo Municipal le indicó al personal que desarrollara planes para instalar un posible centro comunitario en Valley View Park. Actualmente, el Centro Acuático Familiar Bloomington se encuentra en 90th Street, entre las avenidas Nicollet y Portland.
Consideraciones sobre el espacio para una nueva piscina
El terreno en Valley View es propiedad de la ciudad y es lo suficientemente grande como para ajustarse a los servicios que ofrece un centro comunitario moderno. Como parte del proyecto, la construcción en este espacio también permitiría a la ciudad trabajar en las envejecidas instalaciones de la piscina, al agregar un nuevo e importante complejo acuático al aire libre, conjuntamente con una instalación acuática bajo techo que funcione durante todo el año.
Espacios de los campos de juego
El campo de juego Red Haddox y los de Kent Hrbek permanecerían intactos; sin embargo, el plan inicial para Valley View podría resultar en la pérdida de tres campos de juego. Si estos se eliminan, algunos eventos tendrían que reubicarse; incluida una parte del Torneo de Bomberos. La ciudad trabajará en estrecha colaboración con los organizadores de eventos para encontrar sitios alternativos adecuados para las actividades, incluidos los campos de Dred Scott.
El proyecto aún se encuentra en sus fases iniciales, y la ciudad consultará la opinión de los residentes sobre el diseño y la organización. Los costos para la construcción de un nuevo centro comunitario dependerán del diseño del edificio, de los elementos del programa y del tamaño que el Concejo determinará a principios de 2020. En caso de que el proyecto avance, tomando en cuenta el proceso necesario de planificación, diseño, financiamiento y construcción, podrían pasar hasta cuatro años antes que se construya la instalación y comience su funcionamiento.
Sahaminta arrimo kala xulashada go'aaminta xarun bulsheed cusub
Qorshayaasha xarun bulsheed cusub oo loogu talagalay inay si ka fiican sidii hore ugu adeegto Bloomington ayaa abaabul ku jira. Ra'yi-ururinno badan oo la sameeyay labadii sano ee la soo dhaafay ayaa lagu ogaaday in deggenayaasha badankoodu ay taageersan yihiin xarun bulsho oo casri ah oo wax kasta u dhammaystiran yihiin. Xarunta haatan jirta ee Creekside Community Center ee ku taal 9801 Penn Avenue South ayaan haatan waxtar wakhti la socda lahayn. Xarun cusub oo la casriyeeyo ayaa bixin doonta xitaa fursado badan oo loogu talagalay barnaamijyo u samaynta dhammaan da' kasta ha noqdaane.
Xilli qaboobihii la soo dhaafay, kaddib markii la qiimeeyay goobta hadda jirta ee Creekside iyo Bloomington Civic Plaza inay noqon karaan goobo suurtagalka ah, ayay Golaha Magaaladu fareen shaqaaluhu inay soo saaraan qorshooyin loogu talagalo xarun bulsheed suurtagal ah oo ku taal Valley View Park. Goobta ku taal waddada 90th Street inta u dhexaysa waddooyinka Nicollet iyo Portland ayaa hadda hoy u ah Bloomington Family Aquatic Center.
Ka fikirka barkad dabbaalasho cusub
Dhulka ku yaal Valley View ayay Magaaladu leedahay oo waasac u ah inay yeelato waxyaabaha la isticmaalo ee ay leedahay xarun bulsheedka casriga ahi. Dhisitaanka goobtan ayaa walibana u saamaxaysa iyada oo qayb ka mid ah masharuuca inay Magaaladu wax ka qabato goobta barkadda dabbaasha ee duqoobaysa iyada oo lagu daro adeegyo cusub oo dhinaca xarakaadka biyaha dibadda ah oo wayn oo ay ka mid tahay meelo biyo gudaha ah oo sannadka oo dhan la isticmaalo.
Goobaha miidaannada-beesboosha (Ballfield) ah
Miidaannada Red Haddox Field iyo Kent Hrbek Field ayaa sidooda aan loo taabanayn; hase yeeshe, qorshaha hore loogu talagalay goobta Valley View ayaa ku dambayn kara in la waayo saddex miidaan oo beesbool. Haddii miidaannada meesha la baabi'iyo, dhacdooyinka qaarkood ayaa u baahan doona in meelo kale lagu qabto, oo uu ka mid yahay Tartanka Dabdamiska (Firemen’s Tournament). Magaalada ayaa si fiican ula shaqayn doonta qabanqaabiyeyaasha dhacdooyinka si ay u helaan goobo kale oo dhacdada lagu qabto, oo ay kujirto miidaannada Dred Scott Playfields.
Mashruucu wali wuxuu ku jiraa wajiyadeedii hore, oo Magaaladu waxay ka raadsan doontaa fikradaha ra'yiga deggenayaasha magaalada arrimaha ku saabsan naqshadaynta iyo barnaamijyada loo qorshayn doono. Kharashyada loogu talagalo dhisitaanka xarunta bulsheed ee cusub ayaa ku xirnaan doona qaabaynta dhismaha, wax ka koobnaanta barnaamijka iyo cabbirka si Goluhu ay u soo afjaraan arrimaha horraanta 2020. Marka la eego tirada tallaabooyinka looga baahan yahay qorshaynta, qaabaynta, maalgelinta iyo dhisitaanka, ayaa
April 2019 Statement from City Manager
April 12, 2019 - Earlier this week the City Council directed staff to develop plans for a new community center at the Valley View complex. For the past year or so we have been focused on the area around Civic Plaza and the existing Creekside Community Center, so the emergence of Valley View as an option may be surprising to some. I want to quickly explain that and give you an idea what will be happening in the next couple months.
In discussing the building design and what features may be included in it, the City Council was concerned that the Civic Plaza site and the Creekside site were both too small to accommodate the facility without adding a lot of cost to the project for structured parking. Also, in discussing the desire to have aquatics in the community center (such as a lap pool, zero depth entry, and possibly indoor/outdoor kids’ waterplay areas), the City Council discussed whether it made sense to have two aquatics locations since we have the Family Aquatic Center (FAC) at Valley View.
The pool vessel at the FAC is planned for replacement in a few years at a cost of roughly $12 million (in 2026 dollars). We have been saving money for that replacement and have nearly $5 million dollars on hand. The Council and staff agree that replacing the entire FAC with a community center that also has year-round aquatics is a better long-term investment than the nearly $1 million a year subsidy (operations and capital reserve) for a pool that is open less than three months of the year.
The community center at Valley View also provides an opportunity to create more integrated recreational programming that takes advantage of the other assets already there; more than what we could by just replacing Creekside on its site.
We have a lot to do in a short period of time. We will be reaching out to neighbors around Valley View to share this information and get their input. We will be putting out a Request for Proposals (RFP) for architect services, which will include active public engagement in the design process. And we will be presenting options to the City Council regarding costs for the project and how to pay for it if the Council decides to move ahead.
There will be a Town Hall Forum on Tuesday, April 23 at 7 p.m. in the Schneider Theater at the Bloomington Center for the Arts. That event will also be available on Facebook Live. Mayor Winstead and I, along with the City Council, will be reviewing the State of the City and answering questions. We won’t be exclusively focused on the community center that evening, but it will be the next opportunity to hear more about our efforts to replace Creekside with a community center that serves everyone for the next couple generations.
— Jamie Verbrugge, Bloomington City Manager
- November 18, 2019 Council Meeting Agenda Packet (includes site study, traffic study, and community engagement results)
- Comment Cards include resident input received during the engagement initiative.
Why is the City exploring the construction of a new community center?
Originally built as an elementary school, the existing Creekside Community Center facility has outlived its useful life. Reinvestments needed to maintain the building do not make financial sense and there are significant limitations on the way space could be remodeled or repurposed. In 2016 a resident task force recommended that the City Council explore construction of a new community center that would better meet the needs of residents of all ages.
Why is the Valley View Park site the preferred location?
The land at Valley View Park is large enough to accommodate the community center being envisioned and it is already City owned. Building a new community center there would allow the City to maximize the other recreation facilities within the park and to address the aging pool facility, with a possible indoor-outdoor aquatic space that could be used year round.
What will happen to the current Creekside Community Center?
Creekside Community Center would remain open during the construction of a new community center, but is expected to close when a new community center is built. A new community center would provide space for many of the programs currently delivered at the Creekside site. The potential sale or re-use of the Creekside property will be the focus of future City Council discussions.
Will there be programs for seniors at the new community center?
Most of the programs for seniors currently offered at Creekside would move into the new community center. In addition, the new facility will open up the opportunity to add more programming for seniors such as additional group fitness classes.
What will the proposed community center look like?
This has not been determined at this time. One of the next steps will be to select an architect who will then work with the City Council, residents, staff and other stakeholders to begin design of the proposed facility.
What will be included in a new community center?
No final decisions have been made, but components being explored include:
- Gymnasium space
- Walking track
- Indoor playground
- Indoor and outdoor aquatic features
- Fitness equipment and classrooms
- Numerous community rooms for meetings, classes and programs
- Large event and meeting space
The City is also exploring whether to include space for the City’s Public Health Division, which is in serious need of new office and clinic space.
How much will a new Community Center cost? What will the impact be on my property taxes?
The cost of the project will not be known until decisions about the final building design, size, and program elements are finalized by the City Council. An estimate of project cost will be better known by the end of 2019.
What is the funding source for construction of a new community center?
The funding source has not been determined. There are several potential sources for funding the construction of a community center. One source is a bond referendum. In a bond referendum voters are given the opportunity via a ballot measure to approve a proposed issue of municipal securities for the purpose of constructing a public facility. This is considered a pure general obligation bond, meaning it is 100% supported by taxes and the City Council pledges the full faith and credit of the City. Interest rate on the debt is the lowest in the market at time of issuance.
Another financing option is lease revenue bonds. This form of long-term borrowing is commonly used to finance public facilities, including community centers. The City’s Port Authority would be the issuer of the bonds and the City the lessee for a specific project (revenues to support the debt service on the bonds are lease payments to the Port Authority.) As this is a revenue bond, the interest rate will be higher. Since the requirement for annual appropriations for lease revenue bonds does not treat them as debt, there is no need for voter approval.
A third potential funding source is charter bonds. By a vote of five of its members, the City Council can adopt a resolution to authorize the issuance of general obligation bonds that pledge the full faith and credit and taxing powers of the City. Interest rate on the debt is the lowest in the market at the time of issuance. The general obligation bonds can be issued on such terms and conditions the Council determines, without obtaining the approval of a majority of the electors voting on the question of issuing such bonds. The City can pledge any other available revenues or assets of the City to the payment of the general obligation bonds. General obligation bonds can be issued for a public purpose to finance any capital improvement and related costs including, but not limited to, interest on the bonds, the costs of feasibility studies, design, and plans and specifications, publication costs, costs of issuance and other capital costs of any capital improvement.
Other potential funding sources include the sale of the existing property at Creekside and savings.
Are we looking to meet the needs of future and current residents, or be an attractor for younger families?
The answer is “yes” to all of the above. A new community center would be right-sized and purpose-built to meet the needs of residents both now and into the future. Creekside is undersized to accommodate current community center program demands in Bloomington. The City cannot offer the programming desired by its residents due to the lack of space and flexibility in the current facility. A vibrant community center would improve the quality of life in Bloomington and serve as an attractor for younger families as well as older residents.
Mall of America is developing a water park and the middle schools have pools. So why does the City also need a new, expanded pool?
The water park at Mall of America is being designed and will ultimately be marketed primarily as a destination for tourists and other visitors, with entrance fees typical of large, destination water parks. Bloomington Public Schools does have pools at its middle schools, but those are indoor-only facilities and offer limited hours of operation and limited times for open/family swimming. The aquatics facilities at a new community center would be primarily utilized by Bloomington residents, and with a proposed indoor/outdoor configuration, would offer longer hours, year-round operation, and more availability for open swimming.
Will there be user fees for the new community center?
Currently at Creekside, some programs require a user fee, while other programs and events are free. With the opening of a new community center, this dynamic will not change. The fee structure for new features, programming and amenities not currently available at Creekside, such as an indoor playground, expanded aquatics facilities, and a fully equipped fitness center, has not yet been determined. As is the case today, fee assistance to help with the cost of participating in programming at the new community center will be made available.
What is the time frame for a new community center?
It is anticipated that given the number of steps required for planning, design, funding and construction, it could take up to four years before a community center is built and operational if the project moves forward.
How will the additional traffic for patrons of the new community center be managed?
As a part of the Valley View site review a traffic study will be conducted and the results included in the recommendations to City Council.
The City Council appointed a Community Center Task Force in fall 2015 to provide Council with a framework for making decisions regarding a potential new community center. The 17-member task force included 11 residents, three City staff, two City Commissioners and one City Council member. The task force met eight times between April and August 2016. Members analyzed market trends and space needs, studied a 2015 needs assessment report and toured community centers in other cities.
Task force documents
Task force findings
The task force determined that the current Creekside building was no longer a viable option, adding that making major improvements to the building were not worth the return on investment.
The task force recommended that the City replace Creekside with a facility that would attract and retain people of all ages, families, diverse community members and current users. Amenities such as a gymnasium, aquatics, indoor playground, walking/running track, and large and small multipurpose rooms should be included in a new community center, according to the task force.
- Locate the facility on a site of at least 8 – 10 acres in a central location with access to transit and trails.
- Seek out partnership opportunities to mitigate the tax impact on property owners.
- Consider bonding and other financing optionsavailable to the City for construction of a new community center.
Project History & Documents
- Needs Assessment Presentation to City Council by HGA Architects
- HGA Needs Assessment Report – April 27, 2015
- Community Center Task Force charge – April 2016
- Final Report of the Community Center Task Force – October 10, 2016
- Community Center Final Report Presentation – October 10, 2016
- Briefing Article on Community Center Task Force’s Final Report – February 2017
- Presentation to City Council on Memorandum of Understanding with YMCA – August 28, 2017
- Bloomington Community Center Market Study – July 2018
- Bloomington Community Amenities Survey – March 2019
- Community Center Presentation Council Study Session – April 8, 2019
- Council Meeting Agenda Packet (incl. presentations) – November 18, 2019
- Amenities offered at community centers in Eden Prairie, Maple Grove and Eagan – October 2016
- Community Center Update – April 2017
- Memorandum of Understanding with YMCA – September 2017
We want to hear from you! Use our feedback form to tell us what you want in a new community center.