Fitness center to be sold for $1.4 million; no appraisal planned of city recreational facility

Bettendorf city officials plan to sell the Life Fitness Center for $1.4 million without obtaining a property appraisal to determine its current market value.

Instead, the price tag for the 62,000-square-foot building along one of the city's busiest streets, Middle Road, was taken from the most recent assessed value of the property by the Scott County Assessor's Office.

The $1.4 million assessed value has changed little over the past four years.

As long as the city goes through a public hearing to sell the fitness center, it apparently is not required to have the property appraised under state statutes.

And, the buyer – the Scott County Family Y – will then subtract the life fitness center purchase price from its $6-million share for construction of the $18.7-million waterpark project in Middle Park.

City Administrator Decker Ploehn has promoted the waterpark as an equal three-way shared project between the Y, the city and private donors with $6 million coming from each entity.

As a result, the Y would contribute only $4.6 million to the actual waterpark construction, with the city then using the proceeds from the life fitness center sale for the waterpark construction.

The city has not disclosed the source of the projected $6 million in private funds for the waterpark construction.

Under terms of the draft agreement released Friday, Sept. 16 as part of the Sept. 20 city council agenda, the city would pay for all repairs costing more than $5,000 over the 20-year life of the agreement. The Y would operate the facility, retain all income from the waterpark and handle all operating costs and any maintenance expenses under $5,000. The city would own the waterpark and lease the facility to the Y for $1 per year.

The city has not disclosed any detailed operating budgets or the ticket price of using the waterpark for residents.

Use of the facility would be available through a Y membership or a daily fee. The daily fee would not require a Y membership and "shall be reasonably commensurate to other publicly available aquatic facilities in the Quad Cities area."

The sale of the life fitness center is to close before Dec. 15 with the Y taking over operation of the facility Jan. 1.

A public hearing on the life fitness sale and waterpark agreement with the Y is expected to be held at the Oct. 4 city council meeting.

CLICK HERE for draft agreement with the Y.

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