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Tam O'Shanter bids are $860K below estimates

Construction bids for expanding the Tam O'Shanter sports complex and building a senior center on Sylvania Avenue came in $860,000 less than estimates, but questions still linger about paying for a portion of the project.

The city plans to pay for the 50,000-square-foot expansion and is working on developing an agreement with Sylvania Township trustees about funding the 22,000-square-foot senior center at the Tam O'Shanter site between McCord and King roads.

Trustees said they weren't prepared to approve the payment agreement yesterday afternoon during a special meeting.

The city had planned to award the contracts at a meeting last night, but didn't have the time to write the documents or draft legislation, Sylvania Mayor Craig Stough said.

The cost of the projects is less than anticipated and all of the issues with the township should be cleared up, Mr. Stough said, adding “we have wonderful bids.”

The city will send letters of intent about the projects to contractors, including general contractor Brooks Construction, in Perrysburg, which had the low bid of about $3.5 million.

The total cost of the work is estimated at nearly $6.3 million, including $2.5 million for the senior center. The contracts are to be awarded by the city April 16.

The sports complex project includes adding a rink for iceless hockey, indoor soccer, and a walking track. Officials want the expansion completed by Nov. 1. The senior center should be finished shortly afterward.

The city plans to loan the township $1.3 million or issue bonds for the senior center project. The township would pay the city back over 20 years with interest.

The agreement calls for the city to pay for 40 percent of the senior center while the township puts in 60 percent. The project has received $630,000 in grants.

The city wants the option to purchase the township's share in 20 years.

Trustees meet again Thursday and could pass the payment agreement then.

Trustee Dock Treece has indicated he might vote against the agreement because it does not contain a provision for lower payments if the city is successful in annexing township land that would lower the township's tax base.

Trustee Chairman George Fanning and trustee Dick Moses see annexation as a separate issue and have said they would approve the project.

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