Pavilion still on tap for downtown park

A planned $2.46 million pavilion for Pack Square Park will be built, the board overseeing the park’s construction decided Wednesday, but construction won’t start until later this year.

Last month, the Pack Square Conservancy board expressed concern about securing funding for the building, as well as concern over delays in finalizing a contract for construction. The board expected construction to begin on the pavilion last year, about the time it awarded a $7.5 million construction contract on the rest of the park.

During the board’s regular meeting Wednesday, though, board members approved a motion that rescheduled the launch of pavilion construction for late 2009 or early 2010. “Under this plan, construction on the pavilion would begin as work in other areas of the park draws to a close,” said board Chairwoman Carol King as she read the motion. The delay will also help the conservancy raise the rest of the money it needs — about $4 million — to fund all the park work, according to the motion.

The pavilion was designed as a key public space in the jewel of a park under construction. The 4,200-square-foot building would sit at the center of the 6.5-acre park, which extends from the steps of Asheville City Hall and the Buncombe County Courthouse west to Pack Square. Building design features include geo-thermal heating, public restrooms, a restaurant and office space for the conservancy.

Construction of the pavilion will take 10 months once it begins.

Meantime, work on the rest of the park appears to be on schedule to be complete by the end of this year, conservancy members said, with the park opening to the public in sections. The Pack Square area of the park could be open as early as April, conservancy spokeswoman Donna Clark said.

Click here to go to the Xpress Files and read the board’s full motion.

— Jason Sandford, multimedia editor

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4 thoughts on “Pavilion still on tap for downtown park

  1. Cecil Bothwell

    It’s a shame some deal hasn’t been struck with Stewart Coleman. The Hayes & Hopson building would be an ideal historical museum and visitor’s center. A recent inspection tour by members of the Historic Resources Commission led Bill Wescott to opine that it is highly suitable and would be easy to retrofit. It could be done much sooner, as well.

    As an added benefit, NOT building another building on the square would leave more of the downtown park in grass. Grass, for those whose memories have dimmed during the long construction project, used to be a prominent feature of City/County plaza.

  2. Cecil –

    I think that you & the others are absolutely correct on this, this is something the community should really get behind and push for. However, our efforts to organize are a bit strained and the entire campaign is resting on the shoulders of a few key people. Steve Rasmussen is incredible in his research and devotion, but he certainly needs help. Maybe we can combine our efforts and create some movement on completing the turnover of the Parkside debacle and institute this project as something that can really activate & celebrate our community?
    We need a few good leaders, not just mouthpieces, and it could be an admirable campaign for someone who has announced a bid for Council.


  3. bobaloo

    Shouldn’t the “before” be a picture of before they tore the s*** out of it?

    As an added benefit, NOT building another building on the square would leave more of the downtown park in grass

    Again, people should have thought of that before they tore the s*** out of it.
    And I think leaving Coleman out of it would be for the best.

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