As the construction progressed on the new Avondale Recreation and Community Center, residents suddenly realized that the concrete bleachers under construction are not what they expected.
Ken Smith, President, Neighborhood Assoc., “Most of the people were under the understanding that we were going to have retractable, or wooden bleachers like any other facility.”
But it wasn’t just the concrete bleachers that had people concerned.
Dr. Warren Mackey, County Commissioner, “The size of that gym is inadequate. Pure and simple. This is the size of gym you would expect in an elementary school. It’s not a full court gym. You will not find another gym in this city or any place else, that small.”
Commissioner Warren Mackey says that if the project is not halted now and an alternate course agreed upon soon, it may be too late.
Mackey, “This project is going ahead, and if we don’t close it down now, we’ll get to a point where they’ll say, well it’s already done. We’ve been asking and trying to get in touch with them to say, stop construction, correct the facility you’ve got coming up right now.”
But changing even just the bleachers now will prove to be extremely costly.
Anthony Byrd, Chattanooga City Council, “If we rip everything out, the plumbing and everything that’s been put into the ground, the bleachers have been put down, so we rip everything out, you’re going to lose probably a little over five hundred thousand dollars or more, trying to replace, or rip out, and then, where’s that money going to come from in the end, because it was budgeted for six million.”
A community meeting will be held with the city council next Tuesday to discuss options going forward.