Plans for the city's 181,000 square-foot Rock Chalk Park recreation center are back on track to be finalized by city commissioners on Tuesday.
City Manager David Corliss said discussions to tweak a key development agreement for the project went well, and the project's other partners have agreed to add the new safeguards requested by commissioners earlier this month.
The revised development agreement requires a private development company led by Lawrence businessman Thomas Fritzel to provide a monthly cost accounting of work to build about $12.5 million worth of infrastructure on the site, which will also house stadiums for track and field, soccer and softball facilities that will be owned by a Fritzel firm but leased to Kansas University.
Commissioners asked for the monthly cost accounting so that the city would be in a better position to audit whether the city is receiving a fair deal on the infrastructure costs. The city deviated from its standard bid policy, and is allowing the Fritzel firm to build the infrastructure as part of a no-bid contract, but city officials have pledged to closely monitor the construction work to ensure that the city is charged fair market rates.
The revised development agreement also makes it clear that legal fees, loan origination fees and loan interest fees are not subject to a 2.5 percent management fee that Fritzel's firm is entitled to charge the city as part of the construction of the project.
If commissioners approve the development agreement, Corliss said that would clear the way for construction to begin on the recreation center within days. The center, which will have eight gyms, an indoor turf field, fitness center and other amenities, will take just under a year to construct.
Commissioners meet at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall.