City to Break Ground March 1 on New East Arlington Library, Rec Center
The City of Arlington will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the new East Arlington Recreation Center and Library at 2 p.m. Friday, March 1, 2019, at Bob Cooke Park, 2025 Craig Hanking Dr.
This collaborative project between the Parks and Recreation and Libraries departments is the first of its kind in The American Dream City. The co-facility will replace the existing Hugh Smith Recreation Center and East Branch Library. Both of those locations will remain open during the construction process.
Ceremony speakers include Arlington Mayor Jeff Williams, Arlington City Council Member Lana Wolff, Acting Director of Libraries Norma Zuniga, Parks and Recreation Director Lemuel Randolph and East Arlington Renewal President Sue Phillips.
Following the formal groundbreaking dedication, guests are invited to remain at the park for light refreshments, games, and various kid-friendly activities including an Imagination Playground and photo opportunities with the construction equipment.
The 47,249-square-foot facility is set to open in Fall 2020. Funding for the $26 million project was approved by Arlington voters in the 2014 Bond Election.
To create a single building with two distinct functions, architects were inspired by the architecture and automotive designs from the 1950s and today. The intertwining of curved and angular elements, joined by a shared lobby, creates a state-of-the art facility that honors Arlington’s history while providing a modern space for present and future generations.
The open concept library is expected to be a community hub for shared resources such as books, children’s toys and public computers for residents of East Arlington. The library will provide literacy tools to support students, families, and lifelong learners. Free programs include bilingual early literacy storytimes; GED, ESL and other adult education classes; and events for seniors. The recreation elements of the center include a gymnasium, indoor pool with party room, fitness center, locker rooms, group exercise room, community meeting rooms, and outdoor amenities.
Residents are encouraged to visit the City’s bond tracker website for construction timelines and capital project updates.