WORTHINGTON - Plans are shaping up for the remodeling project that will convert the former MC Fitness building into a home for the city’s public works department.

During Monday night’s Worthington City Council meeting, council members authorized the city to advertise for construction bids once city staff and CBS Squared (the project’s architectural and engineering consultant) have finalized the remodel plans.

According to Worthington Public Works Director Todd Wietzema, the remodel - which carries an estimated cost of $2.34 million - will allow the public works department to consolidate all of its equipment into one location. The city purchased the facility last spring for $1.08 million.  

Also Monday, the council also learned that an additional $20,041.11 is necessary for its splash pad project in Centennial Park. The change order for the project was approved.

According to Wietzema, the additional costs to the splash pad project are mostly due to the Beach Nook/bathhouse project being delayed.

“Most all of these changes were because we had shared utilities in both of these projects,” he said, adding that the additional cost now should be realized as a future expenditure savings in the Beach Nook/batthouse project.

The additional cost increased the project’s total contract price to $496,623.50, which - as Wietzema pointed out - is still less than the $500,000 budgeted for the project.

Council members Alan Oberloh and Amy Ernst shared updates on the Beach Nook project, which is undergoing revisions after the estimated costs were more than twice the amount expected. The two met with an architect last week to work on what Oberloh called “value added” revisions, like changing the roof design and the portions of the facility heated year-round.

Oberloh said they were advised during the meeting that their most favorable bidding opportunity might come sooner rather than later, with construction occurring over the summer months.

“We might be looking at a temporary building for restrooms and to keep the Beach Nook operating while construction occurs to keep the project moving,” he said.

In other business, the council:

  • Learned that the Worthington Police Department will continue its Secret Santa program, thanks to $1,200 received by two anonymous donors. Beginning last year, Worthington Sgt. Brett Wiltrout distributed cash to community members to spread holiday cheer.
  • Approved a joint community safety officer and animal control position in response to upcoming retirements of what is currently two separate positions. Worthington Public Safety Director Troy Appel said the newly hired position would work with the current CSO, assume animal control duties and assist the city with administering and enforcing the rental housing ordinance.