The Cedar Rapids Community School District and the City of Cedar Rapids will celebrate the opening of the Northwest Recreation Center on Thursday, August 25 with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 3 p.m. The center will be open to the public for facility tours immediately following the ceremony, until 6 p.m. The open house will feature games, refreshments and prize drawings.
The new recreation center, located next to Harrison Elementary School, is the first municipal building built specifically for recreational programming in Cedar Rapids. It replaces the Time Check Recreation Center that served as a neighborhood center for the northwest area in addition to providing Parks and Recreation Department programs for the entire city. The new building is roughly 16,000 square feet. It includes a full-size gymnasium, activity room, game room and community room with dividers. The center will be open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00, and Sundays from 12:00 to 6:00 p.m.
“The new recreation center is a wonderful tool that greatly improves the City’s capacity to serve people of all ages and make their lives better all year long, in the northwest part of the city as well as city-wide,” said Sven Leff, Parks and Recreation Director.
The City of Cedar Rapids and the Cedar Rapids Community School District have a shared use agreement that allows students at Harrison Elementary School to use the gymnasium during the school day. A private entrance separates students from the general population using other parts of the recreation center. In exchange, the Parks and Recreation Department will have access to the school grounds and to portions of Harrison School during the evenings and weekends for recreation programs.
“We are excited about this collaboration between the city and the school district,” said Dr. Brad Buck, CRCSD Superintendent. “The facility is a beautiful addition to the Harrison campus. I look forward to additional opportunities in the future for us to work together to amplify our resources to the benefit of our students and the community.”
The Northwest Recreation Center was the last FEMA funded facility replacement project for the City of Cedar Rapids. The cost was $4.3 million (including architect and engineering costs) of which $2.2 million was funded from FEMA, $500,000 from the Cedar Rapids Community School District, and the remaining portion from City funds. Cedar Rapids Noon Lions Club and the Lions Club International District 9EC donated $22,000 to be used for furnishing the kitchen and gymnasium.