GRAPEVINE — The Grapevine City Council unanimously approved issuing general obligation bonds for construction of a new public safety building and increasing the size of the city’s Community Activities Center.The award was made to Hutchinson, Shockey, Erley & Co. at a special City Council meeting June 27. John McGrane, city director of administrator services, said eight companies submitted bids for the two projects approved by voters in the November election. City officials accepted the lowest bid.On Nov. 6, residents voted to approve the proposed sale of almost $70 million in bonds for the two projects.Proposition No. 1 supported bonds to construct a 108,000-square-foot public safety building to house the city’s municipal court, police detention center, law enforcement facilities and fire headquarters. Construction is estimated to cost $38.5 million.Projects are in the planning stages, McGrane said.The current building “was built as an office building originally for Braniff, so it was never meant to be a police department and certainly not for a city of our size,” said Jennifer Hibbs, assistant city manager. “We’ve grown in population quite a lot since we moved in there in 1978 and it just doesn’t fit the needs of the department at all.”Hibbs said the building would help “the efficiency of both departments working together under one roof.”Proposition No. 2 supported purchasing bonds to add 60,000 square feet to the recreation center. It will include a senior center, indoor pool, multipurpose rooms, game room, lockers, meeting rooms and other amenities. Plans are to move the senior activities center to the new building. The estimated cost is about $30.1 million. “This is exactly what citizens have been asking us for for a long time,” Hibbs said. “We’ve done many surveys and focus groups about what people wanted in Grapevine as far as quality of life and amenities. Expanding the community center came up over and over again.”City leaders have repeatedly stated that no tax increase would be needed to pay back the bonds.McGrane confirmed that belief, saying the projects are not expected to increase property or business taxes for residents.
Marty Sabota, 817-390-7367