[Comment on planning for a potential facility by email.]
The City of Rosemount is moving forward on a project that will meet long-time goals of the community and keep us at the forefront as one of the best places to live. The project could lead to new indoor recreational facilities.
This fall, the City Council hired 292 Design Group to study the needs for new indoor recreational facilities in Rosemount. The Minnesota-based company has long experience here and in other states with the careful planning needed for successful facilities.
That firm in turn is working with another consultant, Ballard King & Associates, that specializes in the financial analysis that will allow the Council to make important choices for the facility. One is whether it should be owned by the City or operated by outside groups like the YMCA. The firms will also look at what land is available and what staffing would be required.
The firms are collecting input from people who would use the facility. They have conducted in-depth interviews with stakeholders, including athletic groups that serve youth, and other groups that serve citizens of different ages. An open house on the planning process drew a crowd to the Community Center on November 19.
The Rosemount City Council has the perspective that a need for more recreational options exists. One piece of evidence was in the latest community survey. One of the questions was whether respondents would support higher property taxes for a new rec facility. Nearly three-quarters said they’d support it.
The planning process is intended to fill in specifics of features residents want and how much they would cost. As part of the process, the consultants may conduct a detailed survey to determine the desire of the public for recreational facilities -- and the trade-offs that may need to be made -- if a voter referendum is required to fund facilities.
Research should be completed in the spring, to be followed by the Council’s decision on how to proceed. That will be a public process, and residents will have many opportunities to share their views.