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Village Vision News

Community center survey results are in

Thursday, December 29, 2016

81 percent of respondents like the new facility idea

For several months a committee made up of a handful of residents and trustees has been exploring the idea of building a community center here in the Village.
Such a major undertaking requires baby steps. First up was to determine a way to gauge interest or a lack thereof in the idea. The Community Center Committee started to work creating a survey back in September that was delivered in November 1 utility bills.

The goal of the survey, which was due to be turned back in by November 20, was to give all interested parties a voice in the process. By filling out a survey, a resident had the chance to offer a personal opinion on what amenities should be included in a new community center or if the Village should even build one at all.

No decision would be made about the project until survey responses had been received. With responses now turned in, trustees saw the item on the agenda for discussion and possible action at the December 19 board meeting.
Trustee Bob Gruenewald, a committee member, took the lead and updated the Board on the survey’s outcome. The first thing he noted was the fact that the response rate was about 35 percent to 40 percent, or 739 responses, which he called very good.

“Eighty-one percent think we should proceed,” Gruenewald said of the survey responses, describing the project as “strongly supported.”

The process, at this point, is very preliminary. There’s no building site and no cost projections; for now, it’s an idea still being hashed out in discussions. There are a number of data points that have been gathered as a result of the survey, but the simplest interpretation is to report what respondents had on their wish list for possible amenities.

A fitness/exercise facility was the top amenity on almost 70 percent of the surveys. The next five most preferred amenities in order include: indoor swimming pool (53.5 percent); indoor walking/jogging track (53 percent); multi-purpose banquet/meeting center (43.5 percent); an outdoor swimming pool (39 percent); and indoor courts for volleyball, basketball and pickleball (32.5percent).

The question now, Gruenewald said, is how does the Village go about building a facility that includes the top three or four desired amenities?

“We can’t build a facility that has everything, but we’re still open to other amenities,” Gruenewald said.

The next step, he said, is to take a drive to facilities in nearby communities within a two-hour drive and ask questions.

Trustee David Wendt, also a committee member, said the visits to other facilities would offer the opportunity to seek out practical information from those communities like what their cost of operation is.

“What would you do differently?” Wendt said would be another question he’d like to ask of communities that already have a similar facility.

Gruenewald requested approval of $1,500 to fund a group to visit communities within the region that have a community center that committee members could tour. He also thanked committee members in attendance at the meeting, including Shauna Bohlmann, Jason Bozarth, Chris Downey and Kerry Dennison.

Trustee Steve Hubbard made the motion to approve the $1,500 request, which was seconded by Trustee Kerstin Trachtenberg. All votes were Yea.

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