Bids To Build Long Bridge Park Aquatics Center Way Off The Mark | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Bids To Build Long Bridge Park Aquatics Center Way Off The Mark

Play associated audio
A rendering of the proposed sport and fitness pool at the Long Bridge Aquatics, Health and Fitness Facility.
Arlington County Department Of Parks And Recreation
A rendering of the proposed sport and fitness pool at the Long Bridge Aquatics, Health and Fitness Facility.

County leaders in Arlington are going back to the drawing board for a new aquatics center at Long Bridge Park, as construction bids came in higher than expected.

The Long Bridge aquatics center was expected to be an $80 million project. Operating it was expected to cost taxpayers about $2 million. But then county officials started crunching the numbers on the cost of staffing and maintenance, and the annual cost to taxpayers doubled to $4 million. That raises concern for County Board member Libby Garvey.

"I think we should circle back to our community and have perhaps a difficult but I think very important conversation and discussion about the aquatics center, how it will benefit Arlington and what it will cost before we move forward," says Libby Garvey, a county board member.

Now County Manager Barbara Donnellan says the construction bids for the project came in "significantly higher" than expected, which means she will not be bringing the construction contract to County Board members in 2014 as planned.

Deputy County Manager Mark Schwartz says the Virginia Public Procurement Act prevents county officials from disclosing the dollar amount of the construction bids.

"If we were to say anything about it, we would be in violation of the code of Virginia and you wouldn't want us to do that," Schwartz says.

County officials say they are currently conducting an analysis to figure out why the bids were so high and what they should do about it. That analysis is expected to be completed next month.

NPR

From Her Dad To Her 'Jamish' Roots, A Poet Pieces Her Story Together

Salena Godden grew up in 1970s England with a Jamaican mom and an absent English-Irish dad. In her memoir, Springfield Road, she looks back on her struggle to find her personal identity.
NPR

If You've Ever Looked For Faces In Your Potato Chips, Thank Myrtle Young

The Potato Chip Lady, aka Myrtle Young, died in August of this year. She was 90. Young became famous after showing her collection of unusually shaped chips to Tonight Show host Johnny Carson in 1987.
NPR

Tennessee's Medicaid Deal Dodges A Partisan Fight

An agreement between the Tennessee Hospital Association and Republican Gov. Bill Haslam expands Medicaid without tax dollars, an agreement that could be a blueprint for other states.
NPR

Die-In, Vortex, Selfie Stick: What's The Word Of 2014?

In January, members of the American Dialect Society will vote on the 2014 Word of the Year. Linguist Ben Zimmer runs through some contenders — including words both old and new.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.