REDMOND, OR -- The Redmond Area Parks and Recreation District (RAPRD) is asking voters to approve a bond and levy that would add 74-cents per thousand dollars of assessed value to property tax bills. RAPRD Executive Director Katie Hammer says Measure 9-126 is a 20-year bond request, imposing $0.55 per $1,000 of assessed property value, "The bond is for construction only, and it can only be used for capital improvements – so, building a building and purchasing items, like furnishings to be in the building, and purchasing land. But, once that building is built, there will be some need for operating dollars." That’s where Measure 9-127 comes in. It’s a five-year operating levy, adding another $0.19 per $1,000 of assessed value.
Hammer says the bond would raise more than $40 million to expand the Cascade Swim Center, near Redmond High. "It’s a 40-year-old facility. It was built for the times, in the early 80s, and it doesn’t have the modern amenities that people like in facilities, today. It doesn’t have water slides, it doesn’t have spray features. It’s a competitive lap pool and should continue to be used for that purpose." She tells KBND News, "But then it would also have a gymnasium that would have two basketball courts; it could be used for pickleball, volleyball, [and] other court sports. And then, it would have group fitness rooms, it will have some weight equipment and workout space, classrooms so we can run before and after school programs; things like that." RAPRD board member Matt Gilman adds, "Let’s not forget about the elevated track that will go above the gymnasium." He tells KBND News, "We’re really looking for a solution for moving Redmond’s recreation to be prepared for the future."
Plans for the bond and levy have been in the works for a while. Hammer says the design is based on what the public has said it wants. And, she says the district needs a consolidated aquatic and activity center because the existing activity center, located at SW Canal Blvd. and Odem Medo, will eventually need to be vacated to allow for more development in southwest Redmond. She says they lease the building and the city plans to push a road through the property.
Ballots go out Wednesday for the May 21 election. If both the 20-year bond and five-year operating levy pass, it would cost more than $12 a month for the owner of a property assessed at $200,000. There is no organized opposition to the measures.
Photo: Cascade Swim Center