The Guy Cole Convention Center’s kitchen and breakout rooms will see an overhaul later this year after the Sequim City Council approved Monday up to $166,000 in improvements in the spaces. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

The Guy Cole Convention Center’s kitchen and breakout rooms will see an overhaul later this year after the Sequim City Council approved Monday up to $166,000 in improvements in the spaces. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Sequim approves second phase remodel of Guy Cole Center

By Matthew Nash

Olympic Peninsula News Group

SEQUIM — The city is moving forward with plans to remodel the Guy Cole Convention Center in Carrie Blake Park.

The Sequim City Council unanimously agreed Monday to spend up to $166,000 on renovating 1,540 square feet of space — 660 square feet in the kitchen and 880 square feet in two breakout rooms.

Matt Klontz, Sequim city engineer, said the project likely will go to bid in August, with a decision on a contractor going before the city council in September.

Council members considered four separate kitchen plans ranging from $51,000 to $136,000 for the kitchen that covered the basics to the more high-end parts of a kitchen.

They unanimously approved what city staff branded a “practical enhanced” kitchen plan at $80,000 that includes needed changes to meet city and fire regulations and some newer amenities, sales tax and a 15 percent contingency.

Some of the additions include a new oven hood and fire suppression system at a $13,000 estimate; a service area kitchen counter, $6,250; storage counter, $4,400; freezer, $4,100; stove, $3,200; and new windows, $4,000.

The project also includes $4,000 to provide electrical and plumbing hookups for future items.

Some of the older equipment in the 34-year-old kitchen will be replaced and its bathroom will be removed to include space for a mop sink and future amenities such as an ice machine.

Councilwomen Candace Pratt and Pam Leonard-Ray suggested looking into secondhand items to save on costs.

However, Deputy Mayor Ted Miller expressed concern about that, saying that after spending so much on finishing the first phase of the project, he would hate for it to be superficial “and we nickel and dime to finish it.”

Public Works Director David Garlington said mixing used and new items in a contract can be difficult because they might not be able to supply used items on time.

“We have to know if they’re available for the contractor,” he said.

“We don’t want to get too clever with ourselves. What if we don’t find it?”

City Manager Charlie Bush said once the city receives bids, council members can consider adding more expensive items if the cost is lower than expected.

Leonard-Ray said she sees purchasing secondhand items as an option later on, too.

Klontz said of the city’s $166,000 budget, about $72,000 is left over from a Department of Commerce grant that helped pay for Phase I of the project, $34,000 comes from the city’s hotel-motel lodging tax revenue and about $60,000 from the general fund.

City staff reopened the Guy Cole Convention Center in May after closing in early 2016 to renovate the main bathroom, lower the ceiling and add new acoustic tiles, paint the inside and outside, and install new carpet, windows and trim, a new roof and exterior lighting.

The convention center was built and finished in 1983 by the Sequim Lions Club and named after community advocate Guy Cole, who served in many roles.

For more information on the Guy Cole Convention Center, call the city of Sequim at 360-683-4139 or visit www.sequimwa.gov.

________

Matthew Nash is a reporter with the Olympic Peninsula News Group, which is composed of Sound Publishing newspapers Peninsula Daily News, Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum. Reach him at mnash@sequimgazette.com.

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