Welcome to the North Platte Recreation Project
North Platte Parks, Recreation and Wellness Foundation, a Nebraska non-profit organization with finances handled through a fund at the Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.
We did it! Proposition 1 passed and now the Recreation Center Project will become a reality in North Platte. You, the citizens of North Platte, made this happen. Thank you to all who supported this community effort by first signing the petition to add it to the ballot, and then with your vote, social media posts, yard signs, conversations with neighbors and more. The City of North Platte and the Wellness Alliance will immediately begin the next step of finalizing plans for the project, which includes renovations to the Recreation Center, Cody Pool and the relocation of the skate park.
Keep following us for updates on the project. Thank you for your support. The future is bright!
The existing North Platte Recreation Center was built in 1976 and has served as a community hub for physical fitness as well as for social opportunities for a wide variety of ages, backgrounds and socioeconomic positions. The nearly 50-year-old recreation center has had regular maintenance to keep the facility operational; however, the building has not undergone any significant improvements during the past 46 years. The infrastructure is aging and requires more and more maintenance expenditures, with necessary infrastructure replacement looming in the near future. The Recreation Center has served a great need in North Platte, however due to facility age and lack of meaningful improvements over the years, the structure no longer meets the needs of the community.
Quality amenities, such as a renovated and expanded Recreation Center is vital to North Platte’s future, not only by adding vital economic activity, but also by enhancing the quality of life, improving the morale and health of residents, regardless of their financial capacity.
An expanded Recreation Center is key to further developing and growing our community and building a sense of public pride amongst our residents.
Don’t Just Take Our Word For It
Results from an extensive recreation amenity needs assessment by GreenPlay, LLC, have guided the North Platte Area Wellness & Recreation Alliance task force in the proposed recreation center renovation and expansion project. The task force includes diverse community members, including city personnel, business owners, health and wellness professionals, parents and tourism representatives.
The GreenPlay assessment included a needs/wants analysis as well as an analysis of use of existing recreation amenities in North Platte. Top two priorities that surfaced from the GreenPlay study showed high public support for:
1. Sustaining and maintaining what we have
2. Recreation Center-renovations & expansion
Using the focus group and survey data from the GreenPlay study, the task force began working with a design firm (TSP, Inc.) to develop concepts of an expanded and remodeled facility as well as a new build, including estimates on cost, recommended features, programming and accessibility. It was important to compare both a new build as well as a remodel in order to determine the best option for North Platte.
The City of North Platte enlisted the services of Barker, Rinker, Seacat (BRS) to conduct a mechanical and structural assessment of the Recreation Center building. This study found the building to be structurally sound and in good condition for its age, although some significant repairs are needed to the mechanical system and pool area.
The North Platte Recreation Center is the third most used recreation amenity in North Platte.
The number one reason cited in the GreenPlay survey of why people don’t use the Recreation Center is crowding/not enough space.
Part of the YMCA’s mission is the philosophy to never turn away someone with an inability to pay for membership or programs. The goal is to provide space for kids to have a safe place to learn and build confidence after school and over the summer; for families to reconnect and grow together; for seniors to have a safe and supportive place to gather to stay socially and physically engaged; and for kids and teens to have access to education and training to reach their full potential in and out of the classroom.
Lincoln County has a higher percentage of families living below poverty (17.6%) than the state of Nebraska (16.6%). In North Platte, five elementary schools are at 100% of students receiving free and reduced lunch. The overall district is at 58.4% of students qualifying for the free and reduced lunch program.
The Wellness Alliance recommends that the City of North Platte enter into an operating agreement with the Scottsbluff YMCA. The YMCA of Scottsbluff has expressed interest and willingness; however, a formal agreement has not been finalized. The YMCA brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise surrounding youth programming, fitness and recreation. They will customize an operations arrangement specific to our community needs, including membership fees and programming.
Cost & Funding
The total cost of the project, including the Recreation Center renovation and expansion, Skate Park relocation and enhancement and Cody Pool revitalization, is approximately $52.5 million, plus an additional $10 million fundraising goal to create a maintenance reserve and affordability fund.
The funding plan includes a fundraising campaign appealing to individuals, families and businesses. The task force will leverage the YMCA partnership in fundraising efforts.
Funding will be sought from large employers such as Great Plains Health and the Union Pacific Railroad as well as grant opportunities.
Visitors account for up to 25% of Lincoln County’s yearly sales tax.
*2021 Economic Impact of Travel and Tourism in Lincoln County based on results of a study completed by the Dean Runyan & Associates
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)