Read Community Recreation Center Feasibility Study March 31, 2011 text version

Community Recreation Center

Feasibility Study

March 31, 2011

FOREWORD

The Aurora Residents for Recreation Task Force (hereinafter referred to as "ARR") was authorized by Aurora City Council to study the feasibility of constructing new community recreation centers to meet identified community needs. This report presents a solution that addresses the current need for additional indoor facilities and brings Aurora up to par with surrounding municipalities and recreation districts. The proposed solution will help make up for the 30year span during which no new recreation center facilities were built by the City while, at the same time, the population doubled. Most importantly, the proposed system will provide residents and businesses with an infrastructure of recreation facilities that advances quality of life as a defining characteristic of Aurora. The ARR thanks and acknowledges Aurora City Council for supporting its efforts and looks forward to years of further collaboration toward making Aurora the very best city in Colorado and a leader in the nation.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS I.

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Acknowledgements

Aurora City Council, Aurora Residents for Recreation City Staff, Pro Bono Consultants

II.

Executive Summary

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III. Feasibility Study Purpose

i. ii. Addressing Community Needs City Council Mandate

IV. Feasibility Study Process

i. ii. Public Input Comparable Facilities and Best Practices

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iii. Pro Bono Consultant Assistance

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Facilities

i. ii. Existing Facilities North Regional Community Recreation Center

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iii. Central Regional Community Recreation Center iv. South Regional Community Recreation Center v. Moorhead Recreation Center Renovation

vi. Phase II Facilities

VI. Capital Construction VII. Operational Budget Summary VIII. Market Analysis IX. Proposed Funding Mechanism X. Recommendations to City Council

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I.

Acknowledgements

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I.

Acknowledgements

2010 Feasibility Study Roster

Aurora Residents for Recreation

Organization Aurora Public Schools YMCA University of Colorado Cherry Creek Schools Aurora Public Schools Pickens Tech Community Representative Stapleton Foundation Community Representative UC Denver Health Sciences Center Spalding Rehabilitation Hospital Community Representative Community Representative Lovett Family Chiropractic Community of Faith, Chairman Aurora Public Schools ­ Hinkley Circles The Gathering Place St. Therese Catholic Church Community at Large University of Colorado Cancer Center Boys and Girls Club Community Representative Aurora Chamber of Commerce Arapahoe County Buckley AFB Adams County District Attorney Village East Neighborhood Community Representative Independent Youth Sports Orgs. Community/Retired AD CCSD Cherry Creek Schools Lend Lease Communities State Legislature (ret.) Parks and Recreation Board Community Representative Community Representative Arapahoe County Commissioner Community Representative Representation High School Student Body NonProfit Recreation Provider Public Health CCSD Athletics Board of Education Pickens and Community (coach) Latino and Hispanic Community Northwest Aurora Community Independent Youth Sports Bicycle Aurora Medical Community Therapeutic Recreation Community at Large Community at Large Faith Based Community Community at Large Youth Programs and Services FaithBased Community Youth Crime Prevention/PRAB* Health Sciences Youth Community Services Community at Large Aurora Businesses Community at Large Military Community Adams County Neighborhoods/PRAB Village Green HOA Aurora Youth Sports Community at Large High School Student Body Developers Community at Large Community at Large/PRAB Community at Large North Aurora Arapahoe County PXCAT (St. Pius X) Last Name Allen Armitage Birari Bull Cook Ehgotz Hernandez Hilton Jarmon Kerklo Kreutz Lee Leibold Lovett Mayes McClure McCrayTurner McLean McMahon Merz Mitchell Murray Peck PetersRuddick Ponzio Quick Schultz SkakichScrima Smith Smith Somers Sprenger Takis Todd Van Hegewald Wallace Weddig Whitteker

First Name Dan Kimberly Rahul Larry Matt Tim Vanessa Felicia Eric Michelle Cindy Michelle Goody Patrick Thomas Bobbie Lodene Rich Dan Andrea Art Bill George Ana Maria Debra Don Arnie Sonia Leonard Woodie Karli Krista Stephanie Terry KarlArne Deborah Frank Mary

* PRAB = Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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I.

Acknowledgements

City of Aurora Staff George "Skip" Noe, City Manager Nancy Freed, Deputy City Manager, Operations Group Michelle Wolfe, Deputy City Manager, Administrative Services Group Tom Nicholas, Deputy City Manager, Community Services Group Tom Barrett, Director, Parks, Recreation and Open Space (PROS) Lori Daniel, Manager, Recreation Services Division, PROS Tracy Young, Manager, Planning, Design and Construction, PROS Rich Abrahams, Aquatics Administrator (ret.), PROS Curt Bish, Principal Planner, Planning, Design and Construction, PROS Alan Herron, Sr. Specialist, PROS Tim Strach, ARR Project Manager, PROS Thanks also to the following city departments for support: PROS, Planning and Development Services, Finance, City Attorney's Office, City Clerk, Public Works, Facilities Management, Library and Cultural Services, Neighborhood Services

Very special thanks to the pro bono consultants who provided valuable professional expertise: David Sprague, AIA Ohlson Lavoie Collaborative www.olcdesigns.com Ken Ballard, CPRP Ballard*King & Associates www.ballardking.com

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II.

Executive Summary

The Aurora Residents for Recreation Task Force ("ARR") grew out of north Aurora, from a group of residents concerned about the lack of opportunities for the youth in their neighborhood. In 2008, Aurora City Council passed a resolution creating the ARR, requiring that the residentgroup be made up of individuals and organizations representative of the community at large and charging it with assessing the citywide needs for additional recreational services and facilities. Upon completion of the Community Needs Assessment in November of 2009, the ARR recommended to City Council: The City should construct seven new community recreation centers to create an accessible system of facilities that would be capable of meeting the identified community needs; The addition of 399,000 square feet of indoor facility space was needed to bring Aurora up to a comparable per capita level with surrounding municipalities; Shared use agreements with public school districts should continue to be utilized to deliver services to residents, but are not the panacea for filling the identified gaps in the supply of indoor recreation opportunities; The City should pursue partnerships with public and private sector entities in efforts to address facility deficiencies; and, The ARR should be authorized to conduct a feasibility study to determine a facility solution to meet community needs. On December 7, 2009, Aurora City Council accepted the Community Needs Assessment and authorized the ARR to conduct a feasibility study to address the location, components, costs, financing, construction, and marketing of seven new community recreation centers in the City. Founding and other active members of the ARR began to recruit representatives of the community to fill out a roster that would provide an inclusive membership and enrich the group's ability to reach residents. A framework and process for obtaining public input was created, pro bono consultants were brought on board and a project team of founding ARR members and City staff began a 15month long process of conducting the feasibility study. Early in the analysis, it became evident that a system of three regional facilities would have a significant positive impact toward satisfying the community's indoor recreational needs in a manner that was accessible and therefore consistent with findings regarding residents' travel preferences. These larger, more regional facilities are advantageous for several reasons:

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Designed correctly, larger facilities can be more economical in terms of both recovering operational costs and maximizing the economies of scale in capital construction; If located strategically, larger facilities can meet the needs of a greater number of residents and still be accessible; and, Unique amenities can be built into community recreation center models to bring customers in from surrounding municipalities to augment revenues and create a positive impact on the local economy. Project teams led by ARR volunteers began an indepth process of engaging the general population in three regions of the community in dialogues focused on meeting community needs with indoor recreation facilities of their own design. David Sprague, a pro bono architect from the Ohlson Lavoie Collaborative firm, provided expertise gathering resident input through design exercises that included five separate meetings in each of the regions. Meeting participants defined programs, selected building components, chose a site and created capital budgets for construction. Public participation in northwest Aurora revealed that a neighborhoodbased center rather than a regional facility at the Bicentennial Park location is preferred to meet the unique needs of this part of the City. A fourth project team was created to address this challenge, residents worked diligently, the community came together and a suitable and economical solution to renovate and expand Moorhead Recreation Center resulted. The facilities recommended to be provided in the first phase of implementation of this feasibility study include the Moorhead renovation and the three regional community recreation centers located on the following Cityowned property: Bicentennial Park, the Telluride/Vassar site and the future community park site near the Aurora Reservoir. In addition to input from residents, indepth research by consultants and staff into facility feasibility included analysis of: Facilities in the metro region that are most successful at meeting community needs; Challenges to financial feasibility and sustainable operations; Market challenges and trends in participation; Comparable funding mechanisms, rate analysis and program fees; Revenue models and cost recovery; and, Partnerships in solutions that address community needs. Construction and operational budgets were formulated with input from many sources. In establishing capital construction cost estimates, input from regional architects, consultants, contractors, City staff and an outside, thirdparty owner's representative was obtained.

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For operations, professional advice was provided by Ken Ballard, a pro bono consultant from Ballard*King & Associates, a respected recreation center feasibility consulting firm. City staff also added inhouse expertise to create realistic and attainable operational budgets. The total estimated construction cost for the proposed system of three new regional facilities and one facility renovation is $113,524,000. The estimated annual operational support required to cover the difference between projected revenues and operational expenses is $2,200,000. The recommended mechanism to pay for the new system and operational support is a property tax. The cost per $100,000 of home value for an Aurora residential property owner to pay for the entire new system of facilities, including the mill levy required to augment operations is $32.42 per year. The City of Aurora last built a recreation center in 1980. The population has more than doubled since then and surrounding communities have much more to offer their residents, putting Aurora, its residents and business partners at a disadvantage. Over the course of the two years of study, analysis and dialogue with the community, residents have consistently indicated: They need and want additional recreation services, in particular, indoor facilities; They often leave Aurora and take their disposable income with them to obtain recreational services at facilities much like the ones being recommended; They are willing to support a solution that will deliver the amenities they desire if it is done economically and results in accessible facilities; and, They are generally supportive of the price point that has been reached. The ARR is recommending the solutions presented herein to effectively address the current deficiency of indoor recreation facility infrastructure and to raise the quality of life to the expectations of the members of the community. ARR's recommendations to Aurora City Council are: Continue to support parks, recreation and open space opportunities at existing levels and look for opportunities to assure sustainability in funding, and; Support this new system of community recreation centers being presented by Aurora residents as a necessary addition to existing facilities and programs in order to meet community needs. The ARR thanks the Aurora City Council for its ongoing support of the efforts to assess and address the community recreational needs for all Aurora residents.

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III. Feasibility Study Purpose

The ARR has taken a methodical approach to assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities. The 2009 Community Needs Assessment laid the groundwork for successfully achieving the group's vision (see diagram at right). For a copy of the ARR's 2009 needs assessment report, click this link. i. Addressing Community Needs The needs of the community are evident when it comes to indoor recreation. The City has not built any indoor recreation facility space since 1980 when the Aurora Senior Center (now the Aurora Center for Active Adults) was built and the U.S. Census recorded the City's population as 158,588. The current population of 325,078 residents (2010 U.S. Census) is utilizing basically the same infrastructure that was available in 1980. (Although minor renovations have added small amounts of indoor space over the years, the supply has not kept up with demand). This has a detrimental impact on the availability of programs for residents of all ages and interests. The following chart demonstrates how Aurora compares to surrounding municipalities and recreation districts. The availability of indoor space on a per capita basis (indoor facility square footage compared to population) is very low in Aurora. 1.06 Square Feet of Indoor Space Population Square Feet per Capita

3.70 In this updated analysis, Aurora is the only entity that has fewer square feet of indoor recreation facility space than residents. 2.92

2011 2010 2009

Solution/Capital Campaign Facility Feasibility Studies

Community Needs Assessment

The ARR strategic vision was developed in 2008.

0.44

2.19 3.97 1.70

2.62

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The primary goal of the ARR in the feasibility analysis was to address identified community needs. This was to be done by creating a system of facilities that is: Accessible Usable Affordable Sustainable Politically Feasible Political feasibility was an important consideration from the outset. With the structural budget challenges facing today's City operations, it was clear that funding for constructing and operating new facilities is not currently available and that a new funding source would need to be identified. This means having to ask the voters to approve one. However, making a solution palatable to the majority of voters was not such a challenge since virtually every area of the City is underserved. Any solution that would meet identified community needs would necessarily require access to many residents or, something for everyone. A single recreation center would likely be challenged as serving a specific population and would not likely garner citywide support. The ARR was interested in staying on course to deliver a solution in 2011, barring any compelling reason to put off addressing this key community need yet again. Planning efforts and grassroots support began in 2007. After several years of involvement, the core group was eager to see a solution through. ii. City Council Mandate Having received the ARR's community needs assessment report and recommendations in December of 2009, Aurora City Council passed a resolution (see Appendix A) stating that it was "in the best interests of the City and its residents to support the efforts of the [ARR] to conduct a feasibility study for the construction and operation of these centers." City Council authorized the ARR to conduct the needed feasibility study ­ the logical next step in the process. Specifically, City Council required that the residentgroup address the location, components, costs, financing, construction, and marketing of seven new community recreation centers in the City. Finally, City Council directed "the City Manager to assure that the necessary staff support to assist the Aurora Residents for Recreation in completing its work in a timely manner is made available."

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IV.

Feasibility Study Process

During preparation of the Community Needs Assessment, the ARR sought extensive public participation to assure that residents were the driving force behind the effort and that recommendations were founded on the desires of the community. For this feasibility study, the ARR again created a broadbased public participation process to assure resident input. In the case of the feasibility studies, the residents took further ownership of the project and designed a system of residentled teams to provide focused outreach and advocacy. A strategy for how to assess the feasibility of seven new recreation centers was formulated. The study process was broken down into two phases (see graphic at right), ARR task force meetings were held to obtain support for the strategy and process and the resident teams then started implementing the process. Resident teams had a volunteer team leader, a small roster of community The feasibility study process was addressed in phases with Phase I focused members who had been on regional facilities and Phase II intended to fill remaining service gaps. involved in the needs assessment and the backing of the City staff assigned to assist the ARR. Teams were organized geographically and led by the following ARR members: North Region, Bobbie McClure, ARR Founding Member; Central Region, Lodene McCrayTurner, ARR Founding Member; and, South Region, Lisa Thomas, Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Member. An overall Project Team was also created to assure successful and timely project implementation. In addition to City staff who provided administrative assistance (scheduling meetings, reserving facilities, marketing assistance, etc.), a core of ARR members attended weekly meetings throughout the entire feasibility study process.

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These Founding Members contributed by attending weekly meetings and assuring the residents maintained the leadership role in decision making on the project; Dan McMahon, Bobbie McClure, Lodene McCrayTurner and Mary Whitteker. i. Public Input

The ARR implemented a public process that consisted of five public meetings per regional project to assure residents had the opportunity to design their own facilities. The meeting process for each region was as follows: Meeting #1 Benefits Presentation and Process Overview Meeting #2 Site Selection Criteria, Program Elements, Unique Amenity Meeting #3 Component Presentation and Design Exercise Meeting #4 Site Selection and Preliminary Design Review Meeting #5 Final Design, Costs and Input on Financing The design of the public meeting process was intended to educate residents on the community needs and potential benefits of facilities that could meet those needs. Using this information as a frame of reference, meeting participants were able to program their individual facility to meet the unique needs of their region. With a program concept in place, building components and amenities helped define the facility type and size. Site selection was dealt with differently by each of the regional resident groups. The central project team had identified the Telluride/Vassar site as the preferred site early on. The south project attendees inquired about potential land deals with the Cherry Creek School District and the Arapahoe Parks and Recreation District. After investigating the options with these entities, it was decided that the Aurora Reservoir site was the preferred site. In the north region, there was more debate regarding location preferences. See the map at right. Site selection for the regional facility to serve the north

region included analysis of both publicly and privately owned land. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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Bicentennial Park was finally selected as the best site for serving the greatest amount of residents living in the north region. However, many residents expressed concern about northwest Aurora residents' ability to access the facility and a fourth project was created to look for a suitable facility to meet their needs. Participants in the public meetings had the opportunity to design their own facilities based on a hypothetical budget. Costs per square foot were identified for the various amenities and components and small groups prioritized components based on the budget. These design priorities established by the residents were then transferred into facility concept designs (bubble diagrams) by David Sprague of OLC Designs. Preliminary designs created by Mr. Sprague were shared with residents and preliminary facility costs were presented. Meeting attendees were then asked to determine if the cost of the facility design was reasonable and, if not, what components of the facility could be reduced or eliminated. Invariably, participants preferred to leave the designs in tact. Finally, members of each of the regional project teams were presented with a final preliminary design and cost. The cost for the individual facility, the cost for the proposed system of facilities and the proposed operational support mechanism of a mill levy to cover a portion of operations were discussed. Feedback was obtained to ascertain the level of support for a property tax to pay for the proposed solution. Residents were eager to move forward with the proposed solution of a system of facilities to meet community needs. North region participants made a compelling argument to investigate the possibility of a fourth project to be included in Phase I of the feasibility study because of the sheer number of residents and the unique community needs in the more densely populated, Northwest Aurora area of the city. The feasibility study deadline was postponed (see resolution in Appendix A), a process to obtain public input similar to the regional projects above was implemented and a successful solution was recommended in the form of a renovation to Moorhead.

Proposed target service area for the Moorhead facility. The proposed Moorhead renovation would measure approximately 30,000 square feet and be capable of meeting community needs in northwest Aurora.

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ii. Comparable Facilities and Best Practices In order to assure that the decisionmaking process took into consideration successful operations, challenges and lessons learned in the region, facility tours were organized for staff and residents on the Project Team. The following facilities were visited and host operators provided insight into what design issues they might approach differently, what trends they were seeing in participation, and what was successful: Trails Recreation Center, Arapahoe Parks and Recreation District (Centennial) Parker Field House, Town of Parker Ice Centre at the Promenade, Westminster, joint project between the Hyland Hills Park and Recreation District and the City of Westminster Apex Center, Apex Parks and Recreation District, Arvada Family Sports Center, South Suburban Parks and Recreation District, Centennial Throughout the project , partnership opportunities that worked in other areas were analyzed and successful operational solutions were considered. The goal was to capitalize on the design opportunities to incorporate industry leading ideas and concepts that would increase the likelihood of both design and operational success. iii. Pro Bono Consultant Assistance A partnership between the Ohlson Lavoie Collaborative (OLC Designs) and Ballard*King & Associates was introduced as the pro bono consulting team early in the feasibility study process. The ARR benefitted from the assistance of an award winning architectural firm with a specialty in recreation facilities as well as a highly respected consultant specializing in recreation center operations and feasibility studies. The consulting team reviewed the proposed process for implementing the feasibility study, provided input as needed and took on critical roles in the process. Mr. Sprague provided his expertise in the design of the facilities. He attended over 15 public meetings to assist residents in designing their own facilities. He also provided the bubble diagrams for the concept designs. Ken Ballard and Jeff King of Ballard*King & Associates provided input regarding operations. In particular, Ken provided assistance in creating the individual center operational budgets.

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V. Facilities

The emphasis in the Phase I portion of the feasibility study was placed on regional facilities that would have the largest possible impact on meeting community needs. The process for public input outlined above assured that Aurora residents designed facilities and chose sites. Designed primarily to meet community needs, the regional recreation centers include a unique amenity chosen by each residentled design team. These unique amenities are also intended to draw customers into Aurora to aid in economic sustainability. Larger facilities are more economical in that they are generally more capable of recovering operational costs. Multiple programs, rentals, classes , lessons and dropin opportunities can be offered simultaneously. The ability to house tournaments and events can not only offset some of the ultimate operational costs to residents, but it can bring economic impact to the community. Programmed correctly, residents can benefit from the facility's ability to recover operational costs without sacrificing its primary purpose: meeting community needs. As locations and service areas were being analyzed for feasibility, it became clear that the regional facilities would provide a good deal of coverage in terms of the residents they were intended to serve. From previous surveys, the ARR knew most folks preferred to drive 15 minutes or less to get to a recreation center. The parks shown on the map at right are the chosen sites. Strategically located, these sites are within a 4mile radius of most Aurora residents.

The proposed system of facilities provides coverage for a large portion of the Aurora city limits. Concentric circles around sites are 2, 3 and 4mile radii. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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i.

Existing Facilities

Existing facilities serve a vital role in providing services to residents. However, the current inventory of smaller neighborhoodbased centers does not afford the quantity of space required to meet the needs of 325,000 residents. A construction bond to build recreation facilities (in the early 1970's) resulted in the construction of Expo, Meadowood and Moorhead. The Aurora Center for Active Adults (ACAA) was the last indoor facility to be built ­ in 1980.

The Expo Recreation Center (pictured at left) offers a commercial kitchen ("Kitchen on the Green"), activity rooms and a dance/exercise room. Expo was renovated in 2004, adding 1,600 square feet. The Meadowood Recreation Center (pictured at left) offers a dedicated gymnastics gym and activity and dance rooms. Emphasis is placed on programs and classes and dropin opportunities are limited. The Moorhead Recreation Center (pictured at left) offers the City's only facilitybased dropin teen program. Moorhead is experiencing increased use in teen facilities, activity rooms and community meeting rooms. The ACAA (pictured at right) provides a wide range of beneficial services to active adults (50+) and seniors. The fitness component, added in the 2007 renovation, has recently been opened to other age groups as well.

The Village Green Center (pictured at right) is home for a preschool program as well as other programs and classes, such as dance and art.

The Lowry Intergenerational Center (pictured at right) is home to the Morning Star adult day program and a preschool program.

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The Paul C. Beck Recreation Center is the only "fullservice" recreation center in Aurora and it has the only fullsized gym in the City. It is closed for 2011 for a much needed renovation and will reopen in 2012. With an additional 3,500 square feet of interior space gained in the renovation, the center will be approximately 55,000 square feet when completed.

The Beck Recreation Center is the City's only full service recreation center providing an indoor pool, gymnasium, fitness center and activity rooms.

Utah Pool is a bustling aquatics facility offering everything from learntoswim and lesson programs to team and club programs and dropin opportunities. As the main aquatics facility serving the City, Utah has had to absorb participants from the closed Fitzsimons pool as well as those who would normally swim at the Beck pool. Indoor aquatics is consistently requested by residents when asked what their needs are. Whether it is lap swimming, aqua fitness, therapeutic recreation or socializing, the demand for additional aquatics facilities is high.

Utah Pool is a busy place. With the Beck closure during 2011, Utah Pool is the only indoor pool to serve residents.

Proposed new facilities are designed to address the identified community recreational needs in Aurora. Designs are intended to deliver on the programs and components that are most requested by residents and that are least represented in the current facility offerings. A high priority is placed on dropin activities. Facility designs are subject to change based on the financing model. Reasonable contingencies have been built into the construction budgets to try to anticipate unforeseen variables that may influence the project between the writing of this report and actual construction.

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ii.

North Regional

The Bicentennial Art Center, a dedicated pottery studio, is located in the park. The ARR conducted a survey of pottery participants and held a public meeting to obtain their input. Participants expressed a concern about the potential down time that construction on the site could cause for the program. Most were eager to take advantage of the opportunity to design their own modern studio space and possibly add some indoor kiln capabilities as part of the new facility. Bicentennial Park is home to the City's only arboretum of specimen trees used to showcase their growing habits in Aurora. Impacts to this resource should be minimized as much as practicable. The park is also used for summertime "concerts in the park" performances and the annual KidSpree.

Bicentennial Park is an excellent location for a community recreation center. Circles show 2, 3 and 4mile radii around the site.

Bicentennial Park is 35 acres and is in a The 2010 population numbers* by radius (see prime location for creating a visible, map at left): accessible and financially feasible 2mile radius = 79,558 community recreation center. The 3mile radius = 158,026 public transportation system available 4mile radius = 242,898 to get to this site is only going to improve with the eventual buildout of the light rail. The High Line Canal Trail passes just to the north of the property. At Potomac Street and Alameda Avenue, I225 is also available for regional access and Potential residents living a bit further away. Facility location, parking, park amenities and other park uses will be addressed in the Parks, Recreation and Open Space park master planning process. Public input on traffic flow and other efforts to enhance the site to lessen the impact on surrounding neighborhoods will be considered.

Building and Parking Location

Aerial view of Bicentennial Park with a potential footprint of the proposed facility and parking.

* See demographic data provided by Planning and Development Services in Appendix B. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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The bubble diagram for the lower level of the proposed Bicentennial Park community recreation center.

Design features for the proposed north regional facility include (lower level): · MultiUse Sports Court This multipurpose space has a rubberized floor system and will be able to be configured as three tennis courts, basketball, volleyball or futsal courts, inline hockey rink and event space. · Family Aquatics Space A leisure/lap pool configuration. · Indoor Turf Space will be available for programs, team rentals and other events. · Gymnasium Space Space will accommodate two high school sized full court gyms usable for multiple programs and dropin. · Fitness Areas Weights and exercise machines on the lower level. · Teen Area / Exergame Space This dedicated teen space will be available to Aurora's young adults and youth. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance, yoga, pilates and other classes. · Party Rooms These will be available for aquatics parties, a popular family event. · Locker Rooms Two sets, one for the turf/multiuse court and one set for the aquatics/fitness/gym portion of the building.

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Design features for the proposed north regional facility include (upper level): · Cardio Fitness Areas The cardio area is to be located upstairs with access to the track and group exercise room. · Walk / Jog Track A threelane track will allow walkers the ability to walk sideby side while runners have their own lane. Views into the turf area, aquatics area, gym and park break up the visual monotony. · Child Watch Adults can dropoff children in a safe and healthy environment while they enjoy a class or get some exercise. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance, yoga, pilates and other classes. · Community Meeting Rooms Conference rooms for rent, administrative staff meetings or some programmed activities. · Art / Pottery Studio Space designated for the pottery program. Participants indicated a desire to participate in facility design to meet their needs. · Spectator Area Games, practices and events have an upper level viewing area. · Administration / Front Desk / Control Necessary facility operation space.

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iii. Central Regional Facility location, parking and other park amenities will be addressed in the future park master planning process. Planning and design will include efforts to minimize the effects of traffic on the immediate vicinity. A potential access point off Tower Road could help with traffic floe to and from the site. As with all proposed recreation center sites, traffic studies will be conducted and efforts will be made to assure the best possible solutions to handle the unique traffic flow issues. The 2010 population numbers* by radius (see map at left):

The Telluride/Vassar site was purchased by the City as the location for a future recreation center. Circles around the site show 2, 3 and 4mile radii.

2mile radius = 71,738 3mile radius = 131,719 4mile radius = 202,352

The Telluride/Vassar site is 20 acres located off of Tower Road in a geographicallycentral location to serve Aurora residents. Public transportation is available on Tower Road and bicycle and pedestrian access is afforded by the Toll Gate Creek Trail and the Unnamed Creek Trail that pass along the site's periphery. The facility would be accessible to the nearby high, middle and elementary school populations. The site is currently undeveloped, so displacement of current uses is not a concern for the property.

Potential facility and parking location

Aerial view of the Telluride/Vassar site with a potential footprint of the proposed facility and parking.

* See demographic data provided by Planning and Development Services in Appendix B. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the lower level of the proposed Telluride/Vassar community recreation center.

Design features for the proposed central regional facility include (lower level): · Family Aquatics Space This is a large family aquatics feature that will have leisure and lap pools. · Gymnasium Space Space will accommodate two high school sized full court gyms usable for multiple programs and dropin. · Dedicated Gymnastics Facility Space will allow for expansion of the current program, the ability to host tournaments and rent space for other clubs and teams. · Fitness Areas Weights and exercise machines on the lower level. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance, yoga, pilates and other classes. · Party Rooms These will be available for aquatics parties, a popular family event. · Locker Rooms These will service the aquatics/fitness/gym portion of the building.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the upper level of the proposed Telluride/Vassar community recreation center.

Design features for the proposed central regional facility include (upper level): · Cardio Fitness Area The cardio area is to be located upstairs with access to the track and group exercise room. · Walk / Jog Track A threelane track will allow walkers the ability to walk sideby side while runners have their own lane. Views into the gymnastics area, aquatics area, gym and park break up the visual monotony. · Child Watch Adults can dropoff children in a safe and healthy environment while they enjoy a class or get some exercise. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance, yoga, pilates and other classes. · Community Meeting Rooms Conference rooms for rent, administrative staff meetings or some programmed activities. · Teen Area This dedicated space is for Aurora's young adults and youth. · Observation Area Gymnastics meets, practices and classes can be watched from the upper level viewing area. · Administration / Front Desk / Control Necessary facility operation space.

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iv. South Regional City staff met with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to ascertain the cleanup status of the site as a portion of it was formerly used by the U.S. military for munitions training. The estimated costs for final clearance of the area to be developed are included in the site development budget. Facility location, parking and other park amenities will be addressed in the future park master planning process. The 2010 population numbers* by radius (see map at left):

The future community park site near Aurora Reservoir is the location for the south region. Circles around the site show 2, 3 and 4mile radii.

2mile radius = 3,943 3mile radius = 15,164 4mile radius = 40,197

The future community park site near Aurora Reservoir is 473 acres and is located near The Southlands lifestyle shopping center. The site is accessible from Aurora Parkway via Orchard Road. The population in this area of Aurora is expected to grow significantly as the E470 corridor continues to be developed. Estimates suggest the population within the 4 mile radius will exceed 150,000. There are currently no Cityowned recreation centers in this area of Aurora. The site is currently undeveloped so displacement of current users is not a concern for the property.

Aerial view of the future community park site near Aurora Reservoir with a potential footprint of the proposed facility and parking.

* See demographic data provided by Planning and Development Services in Appendix B. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the lower level of the proposed community recreation center at the future community park site near Aurora Reservoir.

Design features for the proposed south regional facility include (lower level): · Ice Sheet and Indoor Turf Field The facility will have one sheet of ice with the ability to expand to two sheets by changing the turf or adding a second sheet. The indoor turf will help meet community needs and provide desirable program space. · Gymnasium Space Space will accommodate one high school sized full court gym usable for multiple programs and dropin. A second gym may be added in the future. · Family Aquatics Space Leisure and lap pools will provide much needed facilities. · Fitness Areas Weights and exercise machines on the lower level. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance, yoga, pilates and other classes. · Party Rooms These will be available for aquatics or ice parties. · Locker Rooms Two sets, one for the ice/turf side of the facility and one set for the aquatics/fitness/gym portion of the building. · Concessions and Skate Rental Theses services will also be available to facility users.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the upper level of the proposed community recreation center at the future community park site near Aurora Reservoir.

Design features for the proposed south regional facility include (upper level): · Cardio Fitness Areas The cardio area is to be located upstairs with access to the track and group exercise room. · Walk / Jog Track A threelane track will allow walkers the ability to walk sideby side while runners have their own lane. Views into the aquatics area, the larger facility, gym and park break up the visual monotony. · Preschool and Child Watch Adults can dropoff children in a safe and healthy environment while they enjoy a class or get some exercise. Preschool offerings will be available. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance yoga, pilates and other classes. · Community Meeting Rooms Conference rooms for rent, administrative staff meetings or some programmed activities. · Spectator Area This upper level (looking down into the ice and turf areas) spectator area will allow for game, practice and event viewing. · Administration / Front Desk / Control Necessary facility operation space.

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v.

Moorhead Renovation

The residents in northwest Aurora inquired about the possibility of obtaining private property to locate a recreation center. Vacant properties within the service area were identified and inquiries were made regarding costs (see map at right). Although the ARR had focused on available Cityowned property to reduce overall project costs, efforts were made to partner with the Urban Land Conservancy and other foundations to potentially obtain property suitable for locating a regional facility. None of these properties were deemed to be feasible for locating a regional recreation center. The northwest project team turned their attention to the Cityowned parks in the service area. Moorhead Park was identified as the most logical solution because: Use of some other parks would result in a greater loss of available green space and park uses; Moorhead already had the parking and building footprint; Moorhead has been experiencing an increase in participation and the growth could be well served by a facility expansion; The utilization of some of the existing infrastructure (pool and part of the building) can reduce overall project costs, and; Some of the other parks had barriers. For example, City Park had the new upgrades that could not be altered and would require a small land purchase just to allow for any sizeable facility. Residents on the northwest project team obtained funding from the Denver Foundation's Strengthening Neighborhoods program (a supporter of the ARR's efforts in northwest Aurora) to conduct a community designed and implemented survey of residents in the service area. Neighbors immediately surrounding Moorhead Park were also queried to see if they had concerns about the potential project and if they would use the new facility. The northwest community has rallied around this proposed solution to meeting their needs.

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In addition to programs for teens, facilities will be available for all ages. Facility location, parking and other park amenities will be addressed in the future park master planning process. Planning and design will include efforts to minimize the effects of traffic on the immediate vicinity.

The Moorhead renovation proposed service area. The enclosed pool would provide users of the former Fitzsimons indoor pool a new lap and leisure pool.

The 2010 population numbers* for the defined service area are: Population: No. of Households: 29,074 8,172

The Moorhead Park site was chosen by stakeholders and residents as the location for a facility renovation and expansion to meet community recreational needs in the northwest sector of the City. The northwest area has limited park space available for the development of facilities. Displacement of current uses and reduction of green space presents unique challenges in this more dense, urban part of the community. Moorhead Park site is 4.5 acres and is located at 2390 Havana St. The current facility is approximately 4,500 square feet and is experiencing growth in attendance as well as program participation. The renovated and expanded center will serve the nearby surrounding neighborhood as well as former users of the closed Fitzsimons pool.

Parking will need to be added.

Potential facility and parking location

Aerial view of Moorhead Park with a potential footprint of the proposed facility and parking.

* See demographic data provided by Planning and Development Services in Appendix B. Aurora Residents for Recreation ­ Assessing and addressing community needs for recreation services and facilities in Aurora, Colorado.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the lower level of the proposed Moorhead renovation.

Design features for the proposed Moorhead renovation include (lower level): · Family Aquatics Space This is a fairly large family aquatics feature that will have leisure and lap pools. · Teen Area This dedicated space is for continuing the successful teen program, providing a safe, drug and violencefree environment. · Gymnasium Space Space will accommodate one fullsized full court gym, slightly shorter than a regulation high school court usable for multiple programs and dropin. · Fitness Areas Weights and exercise machines on the lower level. · Community Meeting Rooms These will be available for meetings and activities. · Locker Rooms These will service the aquatics/fitness/gym portion of the building. · Kitchen This facility will be available to the community room component and the teen area. · Administration / Front Desk / Control Necessary facility operation space.

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The bubble diagram provided by OLC Designs for the upper level of the proposed Moorhead renovation.

Design features for the proposed Moorhead renovation (upper level): · Cardio Fitness Areas The cardio area is to be located upstairs with access to the track and group exercise room. · Walk / Jog Track A threelane track will allow walkers the ability to walk sideby side while runners have their own lane. Views into the aquatics area, gym and park break up the visual monotony. · Group Exercise Space for exercise, dance yoga, pilates and other classes. · Storage and Restrooms Storage for group exercise equipment and restrooms for customer convenience.

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vi. Phase II Facilities Phase II facilities were discussed from a strategic level but as the study progressed, the need for facilities changed according to the Phase I designs. The development of the regional community recreation center concept (driven by economic sustainability, accessibility and the desire to create an immediate and significant impact on community needs) and addition of the Moorhead Renovation to Phase I relegated the second phase to strategic planning. ARR members have consistently held that the specific provider of the facility and/or service is irrelevant. If the philosophy for operations is consistent with the public recreation center model and community needs are met, the facility would be counted toward addressing community needs. The prospective project of this type that has been used as an example throughout the discussion on assessing and addressing community needs is the Horizon Uptown project at I70 and E470 (see map below). With a proposed community center that would include recreational facility space, this project would fill in an existing service gap. The ARR's proposed system is comprised of four facilities and 340,000 square feet of new indoor facility space. Added to current space, this would yield a total of 484,000 square feet of indoor facility space available in Aurora for residents. Using the per capita measure to provide an applestoapples comparison to surrounding communities and recreation districts, Aurora would be in a respectable position following buildout. See the chart on the following page to see where Aurora would place if the project went forward as planned. Phase II and other facility planning will continue within the PROS Department.

Potential service area of a recreation center at the Horizon Uptown project.

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1.06 1.49 2.92 3.70

2.19

3.97

1.70

2.62

Square Feet per Capita

Square Feet of Indoor Space

Population

With the addition of the proposed recreation facilities which would add 340,000 square feet of space, Aurora would be more favorably comparable to surrounding municipalities and recreation districts, moving from .44 to 1.49 square feet per capita.

VI.

Capital Construction

A major variable in the formula for assessing the financial feasibility of the City taking on the responsibility of building the recreation centers recommended in this study deals with capital budgeting. The purpose of a capital budget is to determine the amount of funds required to undertake and complete a major construction project, reflecting both hard and soft costs. Hard costs are tangible "brick and mortar" components, such as expenses related to grading, excavation, utilities, parking lots, landscaping, building construction and any other physical improvements. Soft costs are intangible expenses related to planning, design, engineering, project management, etc. Capital budgets also typically include a contingency reserve to cushion the budget from possible cost overruns. In a feasibility study, it is important to accurately project funding needs so that the capital budget can provide a solid foundation for securing enough money to confidently proceed with plans to build. However, because the designs for the recreation centers are merely conceptual at this point, the capital budget can only be based on those concepts rather than detailed construction drawings and civil plans. In addition, it is challenging to predict what costs will be if and when construction occurs. If the voters were to approve the bond to build facilities, construction would not occur until 2013.

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The total capital budget for realizing the vision of this feasibility study is estimated at $113,524,000. See the chart on the following page for the system totals. This cost estimate was derived by relying on several sources of cost data: Industry standards ­ The pro bono architect and feasibility study consultant along with several construction industry professionals provided input regarding average unit costs for the types of proposed recreation center spaces and uses based on today's market. These persquarefoot costs were then applied to the total square footage planned for each space and use. This resulted in breakdowns of the estimated cost for constructing the separate programmatic elements and a building total. City staff input ­ Input was gathered from City departments that would have some level of involvement to review, approve, permit and inspect the construction of the recreation centers should they be built. This staff input provided specific advice regarding planning and design issues as well as infrastructure requirements over which the departments have purview. Relevant costs associated with their respective roles in the potential project were obtained. Sitespecific cost data for these elements were then added to the estimates generated for the recreation center buildings to arrive at a total capital budget for each individual project. Independent review ­ To assess general development costs, a firm specializing in designbuild and contract management/general contracting (CM/GC) consulting was hired to review the recreation center schematic graphics, the allocation of programmatic space within the centers and the proposed placement of the centers at the parks to assess general development costs. The consultant produced independent "range estimates" for all four centers and lump sum costs using takeoffs from the conceptual plans and marketrelevant experience in the construction field. These estimates were compared to inhouse estimates to gauge confidence in the cost data and to arrive at a final budget. Resident input drove the design process as identified needs provided a basic foundation for the design concepts. Other input obtained throughout the feasibility study process, including successful operational and design ideas from other recreation facilities, were taken into account as the concepts were finetuned to maximize opportunities and meet overall community needs. From research conducted by the ARR, it is clear residents and their families leave the City to access recreational facilities that meet their needs. With the City's main revenue source being sales tax, providing amenities in the City to keep residents (and their disposable income) in Aurora and draw visitors from other communities will have a positive impact on overall City revenues.

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The cost per square foot by type of program space impacted project budgets. For example, aquatics space (one of the greatest needs expressed by residents) costs approximately $350 per square foot to build compared to about $180 per square foot for gym or fitness area space. Site development costs differed for each facility based on the amount of site work needed. At the south facility, for example, the future community park site near Aurora Reservoir will require the construction of approximately 2/3 mile of a road to provide access. For more detailed construction budgets see Appendix C.

SYSTEM TOTALS

BUILDING Base Support Spaces Subtotal Program Space Subtotal Unique Amenities Subtotal Miscellaneous Spaces Subtotal BUILDING SUBTOTAL SITE DEVELOPMENT SITE DEVELOPMENT SUBTOTAL TOTAL CONSTRUCTION COSTS OTHER COSTS FF&E LEED Gold Art in Public Places Professional Services Development Review, Fees & Testing Contingency Bond Counsel and Administrative Fees OTHER COSTS SUBTOTAL $8,606,800 $31,342,100 $18,540,000 $6,931,218 $65,420,118 $14,617,250 $80,037,368 $3,541,145 $1,962,604 $800,374 $12,005,605 $2,000,934 $12,005,605 $1,170,365 $33,486,632

TOTAL PROJECT COST

$113,524,000

Unique amenities were added to the designs to create the requisite space for meeting community needs and a regional draw that would aid in: The economic sustainability of each facility; and, Creating a positive economic impact on the City . The graphic at right shows the system wide view of the unique amenities. In addition to the core recreation facility amenities in each center, a pass holder will be able to access a multiuse court component in the Bicentennial Park center, a large indoor family aquatics facility in the Telluride/Vassar center and an ice arena in the Aurora Reservoir center.

Unique amenities are featured at each of the regional community recreation centers to encourage visitation from customers residing in surrounding communities and help to assure economic sustainability.

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VII. Operational Budget Summary

Operational budgets were developed with the assistance of the pro bono feasibility study consultant, Ken Ballard of Ballard*King & Associates. Expenses are based on typical expenses for these type facilities. Projected revenues are based on conservative estimates of market penetration and admission/pass fees that are market based. Projected admission and pass fee ranges are provided in the attached pro forma (see Appendix D). Operational costs that were unique to the City were vetted by staff members responsible for the particular area. Chargebacks for impact on the general fund were included for risk management, preventive maintenance, information technology and park maintenance. Other significant impacts were accounted for in fulltime and/or parttime personnel costs.

North Region Community Recreation Center Operational Budget Summary Expenses Revenues Difference Recovery % $2,529,394 $1,995,931 ($533,463) 79%

Central Region Community Recreation Center Operational Budget Summary Expenses Revenues Difference Recovery % $2,513,116 $2,023,954 ($489,162) 81%

South Region Community Recreation Center Operational Budget Summary Expenses Revenues Difference Recovery % $3,137,391 $2,520,416 ($616,975) 80%

Differences between projected revenues and operational expenses Expenses $951,176 are typical for public recreation Revenues $549,987 centers. This is partly due to the Difference ($401,189) operational philosophy of most 58% recreation center providers: to deliver Recovery % programs and opportunities that residents have indicated a need and desire for and which are affordable to the general population. The operational philosophy behind the proposed solution for Aurora is to recover the bulk of expenses through revenues but to expect some degree of shortfall. The details of the operational costs and revenues are provided in the attached pro forma (Appendix D).

Moorhead Recreation Center Operational Budget Summary

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VIII. Market Analysis

The map below shows the similar facilities that exist and have an impact on the Aurora market. Aurora does not currently have facilities that are similar to the large community recreation centers being proposed. Community recreation centers can be described as many different programs and services under one roof. Each of the services may have various providers throughout the community but the opportunity to access a single facility for multiple recreational opportunities is a niche fairly unique to community recreation centers, especially in Aurora. The family oriented programming and the drop in opportunities are also unique to the community recreation center model. As discovered in the needs analysis, these are the types of services for which residents expressed some of the greatest need. Market analysis for the project included surveys randomly mailed to potential users of the facilities. With a return rate of 9%, the data are not heavily relied upon for report recommendations but they are informative. In the graph at right, data show that there is a segment of the market that is currently underserved in Aurora. Market survey data (131 survey respondents) show 48% of respondents indicated that they use facilities provided in other cities and districts.

If you and your family use other recreation facilities, which ones?

48.1% 42.9%

18.0%

HOA facilities

Other cities/districts

Private fitness clubs

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In the 2009 Community Needs Assessment, 53% responded that they used other cities' facilities. When asked in the 2010 market analysis survey if they believe Aurora needs new community recreation centers, 76% of the survey respondents said yes (see chart at right).

13.2%

Do you believe the city of Aurora needs new community recreation centers? 10.5% Yes No Don't Know

76.3%

Demographic data were obtained from the City's Planning and Development Services Department for the market penetration analysis (see Appendix B). Ken Ballard, the pro bono feasibility study consultant for the project, provided a framework market penetration model based on his experience in analyzing markets and creating revenue models for recreation center feasibility studies across the country. Market penetration percentages for the 2, 3 and 4mile service radii around each proposed regional facility were developed for the purpose of calculating projected revenues for admissions and fees. Demographics characteristics around the individual facilities were accounted for in the determination of the penetration numbers. For the Moorhead Recreation Center service area, a realistic market penetration of the number of households within the service area was used to arrive at projected revenues. It is important to understand that revenue projections are intended to be on the conservative side. This helps to assure that the business plan model will be realistic and attainable.

IX.

Proposed Funding Mechanism

The proposed mechanism for paying for the new system of community recreation centers is a property tax that would have to be approved by Aurora voters. Two items need to be funded, the capital construction costs and the ongoing operational cost difference. The proposed funding mechanism as it relates to residential property owners is outlined in the chart on the following page. The proposed capital financing mechanism is general obligation bonds issued and backed by the City of Aurora. The cost to finance this construction bond per $100,000 in residential property value is $26.52 per year or $2.21 per month. This is based on a 20year bond at a 6% interest rate.

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The operational mill levy of $2,200,000 is sufficient to cover the projected difference between expenses and revenues for operating the new system and assure that these facilities are selfsufficient and sustainable. The cost per $100,000 in home value for funding this cost is approximately $5.90 per year or $0.49 per month. The total cost per $100,000 in residential property is approximately $32.42 per year in property tax. This will pay for both capital construction of the new system of community recreation centers as well as provide the ongoing operational support necessary to sustain operations. The cost per homeowner is based on the current assessed value of property in Aurora. As Aurora grows, the share per homeowner and Aurora business in funding the new system of community recreation centers will go down. In 10 years, the annual cost to residents and businesses in Aurora could be significantly lower. Property tax analyses and mill levy options were provided by the City's Finance Department. All decisions regarding final amounts were made by the ARR.

Capital Investment (construction bond) $113,524,000

Annual Operational Mill Levy $2,200,000

Bond cost per Operational levy cost per $100,000 in $100,000 in residential residential property property value value $2.21/mo. or $0.49/mo. or $5.90/yr. $26.52/yr.

Total Cost per $100,000 in residential property value (capital + operational)

$2.70/mo. or $32.42/yr.

The total cost per $100,000 in residential property to pay for the new system of recreation centers is approximately $32.42 per year in property tax.

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X.

Recommendations to City Council

The ARR again thanks the Aurora City Council for providing the opportunity to assess the community needs for recreational services and facilities in our community and propose a solution through the feasibility study. The work of the ARR has succeeded in bringing residents together around a potential solution to a quality of life need that has not been addressed in thirty years. The ARR's recommendations to Aurora City Council are as follows. Continue to support recreation in Aurora and make health, wellness, active lifestyles and quality of life a priority for Aurora families:

· Maintain and increase (when possible) current funding levels for existing neighborhood facilities, recreation centers, pools and programs that benefit Aurora residents.

Support a ballot initiative in 2011 to allow residents an opportunity to approve the system that has been identified as capable of meeting current needs in Aurora:

· · · Support the level of investment necessary to bring Aurora's indoor recreation facilities up to par with surrounding cities and recreation districts. Continue to pursue public and private sector partnerships to pay for capital and operating expenses. Help assure that the quality of life in Aurora is made a priority now and into the future.

The ARR has begun to petition the community to create a referendum that would place this proposed solution on the November 2011 election ballot. The ARR encourages members of the leadership of the Aurora community to participate in supporting this initiative. The ARR looks forward to working with Aurora City Council to achieve our mutual goal of making Aurora the best place to live in Colorado.

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