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Frequently Asked Questions

We have created this FAQ sheet to help address questions that residents might have as the Upper Arlington Community Center project moves through the detailed design phase to construction. If you have any questions that are not addressed here, we’d love to hear from you. Click here to send us an email and check back for updates to this section.

What is currently under construction at the Kingsdale site?
Senior housing is currently under construction adjacent to the UACC site. The Community Center is nearing the completion of the detailed design process.

Where will I park if I’m going to the community center?
The UACC is being planned with several parking areas that will be clearly identified with directional site signage. The majority of spaces will be provided in a parking garage that will be part of the apartment building located to the immediate east of the community center. Surface parking will be available at the northern end of the existing Giant Eagle parking lot. A very limited number of surface parking spaces will be provided adjacent to the community center, designated for people with disability placards or other mobility challenges.

Will there be enough parking spaces?
Parking for the community center will be provided as part of the overall Kingsdale redevelopment. The City is working closely with the developer to ensure enough parking is available to accommodate all of the uses to be located on the site, including the community center.

How will you ensure there is enough parking for seniors and those with mobility challenges?
Dedicated parking for those with disability placards or mobility challenges will be provided adjacent to the community center and on the first floor of the adjacent parking garage located to the immediate east of the community center. For those able to park a little further away, safe and attractive pedestrian-accessible routes will be provided from the parking areas to the community center entrance. Additionally, a drop-off lane is planned at the front entrance of the facility to aid in ease of access.

Will there be parking for bicycles?
Yes. Throughout the design process residents have stressed the importance of parking for bicycles. The facility will provide ample parking space for bicycles.

How many lap lanes will be provided in the pool?
During lap swimming periods, four lanes will be available. During general pool use periods, this number will be reduced to accommodate other uses.

Will I be able to reserve a time for lap swimming?
Yes. Lap swimming, with some reservable lane times, will be available at various times throughout each day, integrated with other programmed pool activities.

Why isn’t there a separate pool dedicated to fitness/lap swimming?
Space and budgetary constraints limit the size and scope of the aquatics program at the community center to one pool/mechanical system. As a result, it is being designed as a multi-use facility that maximizes the available space to best meet the needs of different age groups and user types. Additionally, the new natatorium at UA High School is used by Upper Arlington’s competitive swim groups, and we do not intend to host swim clubs or other competitive swim practices at the community center.

I thought the design of the Community Center had been decided by the Community Center Feasibility Task Force, what is this detailed design process about?
The Task Force process brought to light the types of uses needed/wanted by residents and developed a high-level concept for how those uses might be incorporated into the available footprint for a Community Center. The detailed design process is necessary to make sure all the desired uses can be brought together seamlessly and efficiently, within the available footprint, and on budget. It will provide all of the planning, drawings, and detailing necessary for the construction of the facility and involves many architectural, engineering, and other logistical components needed to bring the community’s initial vision to life.

What facilities will be in the Community Center?
The facilities and programming planned for the Community Center are a direct result of the input gathered by the Task Force early in the study process:

  • It will serve as the central community gathering place for events and celebrations that residents have asked for.
  • It will provide fitness, wellness, health, and leisure opportunities for all ages and interests.
  • It will provide seniors with new space that has been designed specifically to meet their needs, while also giving seniors access to many new programming opportunities.

The building program developed for the Kingsdale site is for a five-story building. The Community Center will include:

  • Entry/lobby, indoor pool, multi-purpose event/party space, locker rooms
  • Fitness/exercise spaces
  • 3 gymnasiums (1 multi-purpose)
  • Child watch
  • E-sports room
  • Walking/running track
  • Program classrooms
  • Multi-purpose room/ meeting space
  • Outdoor multi-purpose terrace

How does the size of the senior lounge compare to the current senior center?
The senior lounge at the new community center will be around 1,400 square feet, compared to 450 square feet of lounge space in the existing senior center. The new senior lounge will be adjacent to a large outdoor deck, providing up to 3,000 square feet of additional gathering and programming space. Senior members will also have access to other parts of the community center, with senior-specific programming hosted in various rooms throughout the building.

Will there be space dedicated to seniors?
Yes. The senior focus groups stressed the importance of having a dedicated, comfortable space for seniors to socialize and have fellowship with one another. The senior lounge on level two will be dedicated to this use. It will be adjacent to the outdoor deck and will feature furnishings specifically selected to meet the needs of the senior population.
Where will my specific program be if the building isn’t exactly like the current senior center?
We have clustered three program rooms, including an arts and crafts room adjacent to the senior lounge on the second floor. Every effort will be made to put our senior-oriented programs in those rooms unless they are too large or require different types of equipment.

How is the City planning to pay for the construction of the Community Center?
The City plans to use a combination of debt and cash financing for the UA Community Center. The City will issue income tax revenue bonds to fund the majority of the construction of the community center (not-to-exceed $55M in income tax revenue bonds, as authorized by Ordinance 2-2021). The bonds will be repaid through various sources including Tax Increment Financing (TIF) funds, as well as current and generated revenue sources from the new development. In addition – pending approval of City Council – the City would contribute an additional amount of unreserved/uncommitted City funds, taking the total contribution to at least $14M and use the $8M in projected private donations raised by the Upper Arlington Community Foundation through its Upper Arlington Community Center Capital Campaign. The City has also been successful in receiving a State Capital grant of $450,000 towards the Community Center project costs.

Financing for the office space will also follow the original plan and will be funded via a separate bond issuance, to be repaid through the corresponding lease revenues. At this time, this amount is estimated to be approximately $13M.

How is the City going to pay to operate the Community Center?
A business model was developed based on usage and pricing structures for comparable facilities in other communities. Some of the keys to success include:

  • A focus on spaces that can be used for multiple purposes.
  • Incorporating senior programming as part of a larger facility.
  • Achieving staffing and operations efficiencies by bringing programs within one location
  • Providing a combination of memberships, drop-in fees, programming, and facility rentals.

In the fall of 2022, the City conducted a process to confirm and update the findings of the initial operating pro-forma that was conducted as part of the feasibility study process. The new pro-forma was based on the programming included in the detailed design and was consistent with the initial studies. This pro-forma was presented to City Council in November. Please use this link for more information, including the council presentation: //communitycenter.upperarlingtonoh.gov/november-2022-operating-budget-presentation/

Will it be affordable to everyone who lives in UA?
Membership and usage fees would be comparable to market-rate membership and usage fees, and would be tiered – single adult, family, senior, etc. Additionally, the City has established the Play UA Financial Assistance Program that is designed to support community members who face financial barriers that may prevent them from participating in the department’s programs. This program will assist residents facing financial barriers to participation in the community center.

Will non-residents be able to use it?
The operating model includes non-resident usage as part of the service market. A non-resident will pay a premium rate while residents receive discounted rates. The City includes non-residents that work in UA and pay income taxes to UA as customers eligible for the resident rate. The rate structure is a tool utilized to prioritize resident usage of the facility.

Why is the City planning to include office space within the building?
Rentable office space – which would total approximately 40,000 square feet – are included as a revenue-generating and service enhancement opportunity. After issuing a request for proposals concentrated on healthcare providers, the City is in discussions with the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center to lease this space and augment services within the Community Center.

Co-CREATE WITH US!

The City of Upper Arlington and the Parks & Recreation Department are committed to a transparent and collaborative design process for the new Community Center. Please use the form to sign-up for email updates and to provide us your feedback and questions.

City of Upper Arlington
3600 Tremont Rd, Upper Arlington OH 43221

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