$18 million Truckee community center opens Saturday | SierraSun.com

$18 million Truckee community center opens Saturday

Greyson Howard
Sierra Sun
Greyson Howard/Sierra SunThe New Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District Community Recreation Center.

TRUCKEE and#8212; Climbing walls, an elevated running track, basketball courts and exercise equipment and#8212; sounds like a modern gym.

Add classrooms, kitchens, fireplaces, dance studios and a picnic area, and you’ve got Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District’s new community center, opening Saturday.

and#8220;Everybody is invited to the grand opening and#8212; it will be a town party,and#8221; said Steve Randall, the district’s general manager. and#8220;We’ve been working on this a long time.

The district’s Board Chairman, Kevin Murphy, said the opening is just in time for the holidays.

and#8220;This is going to be the first gift of Christmas,and#8221; he said. and#8220;It’s going to be fantastic.and#8221;

The 40,000-square-foot center just north of Interstate 80 on Donner Pass Road will be a good place for a town party too, with the capacity to hold 1,000 people and#8212; about 700 more than anywhere else in town, Randall said.

and#8220;The feedback we’ve been getting from the community on a scale of one to 10 has been a 10 plus,and#8221; Murphy said. and#8220;I’ve never seen such overwhelming public response, and a lot of them haven’t even seen the building yet.and#8221;

The new building, which came in at about $18 million, or about $6 million under budget, will allow the district to expand its programs with the new classroom space and larger gym area, Randall said.

District residents can pay $20 a month to use the gym equipment and running track, or pay $3 per visit on a drop-in fee, he said, with the intent to cover staff and maintenance for those items.

And those activities and classes start right away, Randall said and#8212; the ribbon cutting is at 11 a.m. Saturday, and classes start at 11:30.

and#8220;People will be able to use the climbing wall, exercise equipment, there will be dance classes, and free food from the Lyon’s Club,and#8221; Randall said.

Murphy said the new center and expanded programs means great opportunities for children after school.

and#8220;Imagine your kids getting on the bus after school and having all these programs and#8212; climbing, soccer, volleyball basketball and#8212; in the past they just scattered and#8212; where did they have to go?and#8221; Murphy said.

Festivities will continue until 4 p.m.

With the new community center, Randall said the district plans to turn the current building on Church Street into a performing arts center, with a 250-300 seat theater.

Of the $6 million that the community center came in under budget, the board has allocated $3 million to start in on planning and building for the performing arts center, Randall said.

and#8220;It will probably cost $6 to $8 million,and#8221; Randall said.

Then comes a potential aquatics center at the new community center, with swimming pools, a zero-entry beach-like pool, and maybe even water slides, he said, costing potentially $10 to $12 million.

and#8220;We didn’t have to go to the taxpayers for the community center, but we may have to put a bond measure to the voters for the aquatics center,and#8221; Randall said. and#8220;I’d like to see a retractable cover so it could be open in the summer but used year-round, but it comes down to cost.and#8221;

To learn more about the community center, go to http://www.tdrpd.com.