Gypsum Recreation Center to increase rates for first time beginning fall 2018 | VailDaily.com

Gypsum Recreation Center to increase rates for first time beginning fall 2018

GYPSUM — Ever since it opened in December 2006, the Gypsum Recreation Center has charged the same daily, punch card and annual membership rates.

The center also has had the same carpet and cardio equipment.

This week, representatives from the Western Eagle County Metropolitan Recreation District approached the town of Gypsum with a proposal to increase prices and revamp programs and equipment at the rec center.

When the center was built more than a decade ago, an intergovernmental agreement between WECMRD and the town specified that before the district could change rates, it had to present its plans to the town for comment.

Rates and value increase

While noting that membership rates haven't increased since the day the center opened, WECMRD Executive Director Janet Bartnik said the district opted to take a comprehensive approach to its rate restructure. While prices are going up, so is the value.

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Bartnik noted that results from a recent recreation survey showed that respondents wanted to see center programs — fitness classes and child care — included in the regular center membership fees. Historically the Gypsum rec center has charged extra for these al a carte services.

"Restructuring the current membership pricing structure by adding fitness classes, child watch and tumble tots adds a much great value to all membership packages," Bartnik said.

The new rates at the Gypsum rec center will increase adult, couple and family rates but single youth rates will remain the same. For example, the daily admission fee for adults will increase from $7 to $10 but the youth rate will remain $5. Bartnik said the Gypsum rec center staff contacted a number of comparable facilities, both in Colorado and out of state, to compile its suggested pricing. She noted rates were based on average market rates.

The proposed increase will begin in September.

Sprucing up the center

Along with the pricing discussion, Bartnik and Gypsum rec center Manager Scott Ruff outlined upgrades planned at the facility.

The plan includes:

• Replacement of fitness center cardio equipment

• Addition of new strength equipment

• Replacement of carpeting on the upper level with rubberized performance flooring

• Replacement of carpeting on the lower level

• Addition of a staff office on the upper level

• Replacement of lobby/cafe furniture and equipment

• Minor mechanical work

Bartnik noted that the center still has its original carpet and it is definitely showing wear.

"The new material is more of a performance floor that you would see in collegiate athletic facilities," she noted.

As for the new cardiac equipment, Ruff said the upgrade was long overdue. He said the current machines have outlasted their typical lifespans and are not up-to-date with current technology.

"We are going to upgrade to the Cadillac of console units," Ruff said. "You can create your own account to track workouts. It's all very interactive."

While they are bringing in new machines, Bartnik said the center will also look at reorienting the workout space. Rather than lining up machines in a couple of rows, she said the new layout will be planned to have better access to the large windows around the room.

There are currently 22 pieces of equipment in the cardio area. After the upgrade, there will be 25 machines.

Splitting the tab

The WECMRD Board has already allocated $250,000 for the Gypsum Recreation Center project and the district requested the town of Gypsum contribute $175,000 toward the effort.

Gypsum Town Manager Jeff Shroll noted that as part of the original agreement between the town and the district, both entities agreed to contribute $50,000 annually for maintenance and upgrades at the rec center. Shroll said that there is a balance of $57,000 from last year's allocation that can be applied toward the $175,000 project. Additionally the town's $50,000 from 2018 can be earmarked for the project. For the remaining funding, Shroll said the town can use Colorado Lottery money that the town has on hand, in reserve, specifically for these kinds of projects.

The Gypsum Town Board unanimously approved the rate increase and upgrade options as proposed.