GREAT FALLS — The City of Great Falls Park & Recreation Department is in the early stages of conducting a feasibility study for a new recreation facility.
“We will be putting together a RFP [request for proposal] to put out a feasibility study, hopefully before the end of the year,” said Steve Herrig, department director.
The selected firm will come in to conduct surveys via public forums to find out what the residents of Great Falls would like to see in a new facility.
“The firm would come in and they will start from ground zero and work up to what we’re looking at,” Herrig said. “Whether it’s an indoor aquatics facility or whether it’s a combined rec center with an indoor aquatic facility, it will go back to what the citizens really want in the facility.”
The feasibility study is projected to cost around $60,000 to $80,000.
This study comes after the city’s decision to demolish the century-old Morony Natatorium, which closed at the end of 2018.
“We can replace what we lost and maybe even make it better,” Herrig said. “Last fall, I did some tours around the state to look at some facilities. Missoula has an indoor aquatics facility. Bozeman has an indoor aquatics facility. But they don’t have that combined rec center.”
Herrig says the new recreation center will not be in the same location as the Natatorium, which was at 111 12th Street North.
“Obviously, we would like to look for some place that we already have to keep our costs down. We have some really adequate parks that would be a good home for a facility,” Herrig said.
Herrig says the city hopes to have a firm selected by the end of the year so the study can begin.
“We’re looking to try and get the rfp out as quick as we can. Maybe get something set in place with the firm hopefully before the end of the year. But we want to make sure that we do our due diligence to make sure that we get somebody that going to do what we want,” Herrig said.