A meet-the-manager session precedes the city council meeting Tuesday. Members of the public may at the same time meet and greet the 60 new members of the Durham Youth Council.
The affair begins at 6 p.m. in the City Hall lobby, honoring Tom Bonfield, who became Durham's City Manager Aug. 11.
The Youth Council consists of youngsters in grades 9 through 12. They serve one-year terms, during which they sit on city boards and committees and work in public-service projects. The incoming members will be formally inducted during the council's 7 p.m. meeting.
At its work session last week to prepare for Tuesday's meeting, Rhonda Parker and Beth Timson from the city parks department presented plans for the new Walltown Park and Trinity Avenue recreation centers.
The Trinity Avenue facility was originally a YMCA that Duke University has operated as a diet and fitness center. Duke is selling the property to the city for $2.6 million; the city expects to put $600,000 into interior renovations and $3 million into repairing the grounds, athletic fields and drainage — a $7.2 million project.
Construction on phase 1 at Walltown is supposed to start in early 2009 and expected to take a year. The $8.7-million project includes a gymnasium with fold-up stage, a teaching-style kitchen and a computer lab. Phase 2 includes an indoor swimming pool. That phase is not yet scheduled, but $1 million is allocated for design.
"There is no reason it should cost $1 million to design an aquatic center," said council member Eugene Brown. Brown was also less than pleased after seeing a rendering of the Walltown design.
Walltown center rendering
"This is not the most attractive $10 million building I have ever seen," he said. "Sometimes the emperor has no clothes and someone has to speak out."