HUTCHINSON, Kan. — For a second time, the Hutchinson City Council rejected bids for the proposed pavilion shelter house at Rivers Banks Orchard Park during Tuesday’s regular meeting.
This comes after a second round of bids came in well over the bond money allocated for the project. During the meeting, Parks Director Justin Combs asked the council to reject the low bid of $1.3 million. “I really don’t have a solid recommendation,” Combs said when it came to the original proposals. He did offer a different proposal, which includes an open-air shelter house with enclosed bathrooms attached. Combs said that could fall within the budget. “I think we could achieve that goal,” Combs added.
However, the council was more in agreement to put a halt to any immediate plans for the shelter rather than move forward. The city is facing a deadline to spend the bond money. Law prohibits the city from hanging on to the bonded funds over a period of time.
The council expressed hope that, when the park’s master plan is finished later this spring, it can find a way to either fund some type of shelter house at the park or build a smaller shelter and fund other park needs. A third option would be to use the bonded money for another major project, such as the Fun Valley renovation.