It’s finally going to stop “coming” and start “being” here. It’s the long-awaited ground-breaking of the new Newport Aquatic Center – located behind City Hall, and tied into the recreation center.
It’s been a long road, riding the volatility in construction costs based on a recovering national economy. And of course, when an economy improves, prices go up. So the ground-breaking will be more generic than specific with Public Works Director Tim Gross massaging numbers as they build what was supposed to be a seven or eight million dollar facility – now slightly over nine million. But Gross says by watching costs like a hawk and sequencing certain aspects of construction, the project should include just about everything promised to the voters who approved the project. Gross said whatever is not included in the project may be able to be a later add-on. But he told the city council recently that he’s confident the job will get done, on budget and everyone will be very pleased with the final product. But he adds that there are always some changes with any high dollar project. He just wants to keep them to a minimum.
The ground-breaking is set for noon, Monday, October 26th, right next to the Newport Recreation Center. Everyone interested in this historic event are more than cordially invited to attend and witness the beginning of something wonderful for Newport and its citizens – and for the added attraction it will no doubt become for tourists as well as competition swim meets that are expected to draw swimmers from throughout the northwest.