WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Arlington Makes Bids For Aquatics Center Public, But Future Still In Doubt

Play associated audio
A view of proposed aquatics center from the esplanade at Long Bridge Park.
Arlington County Parks Department
A view of proposed aquatics center from the esplanade at Long Bridge Park.

Arlington County officials say that information that was previously withheld regarding construction bids for a new aquatics center should actually be part of the public record, and have released it.

Earlier this month, Arlington County Manager Barbara Donnellan announced plans to construct a new aquatics center at Long Bridge Park had been shelved indefinitely. County officials said the bids came in significantly higher than expected, although Deputy County Manager Mark Schwartz said at the time Arlington officials would be keeping the amount of the bids a secret.

"Those bids are still open. So 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," he said.

But now Arlington officials say the bids are part of the public record, and a newly released memorandum spells out that the construction bids range from $82 million to $83 million. The total cost of the project  design and construction  was expected to be about $80 million, although county officials won't say what their expectation was for the cost of construction alone. Schwartz declined to be interviewed for this story.

Frank Shafroth, the director of the Center of State and Local Leadership at George Mason University, says that even with the information out in the open, there remain some unanswered questions. "Is it some problem within the county and they need to fix it before they go out again or are they deciding we just got some wild bids?", he asks.

Arlington officials are in the process of trying to figure out why the bids were so high, and what they're going to do about it now.


Hieronymus Bosch Died 500 Years Ago, But His Art Will Still Creep You Out

Known by some as "the Devil's painter," Bosch depicted imaginary animals and souls being violently tortured. At least one critic believes he's the father of modern art.

With A Zap, Scientists Create Low-Fat Chocolate

Scientists say they've figured out how to reduce the fat in milk chocolate by running it through an electric field. The result is healthier, but is it tastier?
WAMU 88.5

Analysis Of The Last Supreme Court Decisions Of The Term

Supreme Court decisions are expected soon on issues that include access to abortion and limits on executive power: Analysis of major decisions at the end of the term and the impact of a vacant seat on the court.


President Obama Acknowledges 'Brexit' To Silicon Valley Crowd

President Obama delivered a speech Friday at Stanford University, and remarked on the Brexit vote in front of a crowd of young, tech-forward, pro-globalization attendees from 170 countries.

Leave a Comment

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