A new target date has been set for the Oak Ridge Senior Center’s temporary transition to the Civic Center on the Oak Ridge Turnpike. Recreation and Parks Department Director Jon Hetrick says they now expect to begin the move in January.
Senior Center activities will then be held in a wing of the Civic Center near the indoor pool facility. Part of the area currently houses administrative offices for Recreation and Parks employees. Most of those employees will relocate to the Scarboro Center while a city-owned building on Badger Avenue is undergoing minor renovations. Once changes to that building, the former Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic, are complete, staff will move into the Badger Avenue location permanently.
An architectural firm retained by the city is working on plans for a brand new Senior Center. The aim is to locate it on the same property with the Civic Center.
“The new Senior Center will be centrally located, giving area seniors much easier access to other city facilities as well as shopping and dining in Main Street Oak Ridge,” Hetrick said. “The Recreation and Parks Department is working to merge the current Senior Center and Civic Center activity calendars so that we can still offer something for everyone in a single location. It’s our goal to manage this transition to the best of our ability, assess the needs of those who will be using the new Senior Center, make some minor accessibility improvements, and get it up and running as soon as possible.”
Moving the Senior Center from Emory Valley Road is necessary because Anderson County has chosen to re-purpose the Daniel Arthur Building. It will serve as the new Anderson County General Sessions Court, Division II, which is currently located on Oak Ridge Turnpike, as well as a records storage facility.
The city plans to approve and release the details of the design as soon as they’re complete. A possible timeline for the new center’s construction is estimated at 18 months.
This story originally appeared in the December 2016 edition of the City of Oak Ridge Newsletter.
See previous story on the proposed move of the Senior Center to the Civic Center here. See previous story on the proposed move of the Anderson County General Sessions Court to the county-owned building on Emory Valley Road, where the Senior Center is now, here.