Capital projects underway in ChelseaPublished 2:30pm Thursday, September 26, 2013
By STEPHANIE BRUMFIELD / Staff Writer
CHELSEA – After voting to borrow $6 million from Regions Bank in July, the city of Chelsea is on its way to completing several million dollars worth of capital projects, many of which are currently underway.
Within the next three to four years, Chelsea Mayor Earl Niven said the city of Chelsea is expected to spend about $8-9 million on capital projects to address the city’s growth. Much of the funding is coming from a one-cent sales tax increase the city passed in May, which is expected to generate about $100,000 per month.
“The capital projects that we have (are part of) an ongoing list,” Niven said. “When we complete one, we’ll look at the next one.”
Currently under construction are recreational tennis courts on Shelby County 51, which should be complete in about two months, Niven said.
“This is going to give us about a year’s head start with tennis,” said Niven, noting that more tennis courts are planned for the 105-acre property behind Chelsea High School the city purchased in June.
“We have a lot of interest in our community in tennis,” he said.
Once both sets of courts are completed, the courts on Shelby County 51 will be used mainly as recreational tennis courts for the community, whereas the tennis courts behind the high school will be competitive courts used for school-sponsored tournaments, Niven said.
In addition to six competitive tennis courts, a baseball complex is also planned for the 105-acre property. Niven said workers are currently in the process of clearing timber, and construction would likely begin on a road leading to the park this week.
The re-paving of King’s Home Drive, another project currently underway, should be completed within the month, Niven said.
The city also has plans to build a new community/senior center on property purchased on Chelsea Road. The community center is expected to be a $3 million project that will take about 18 months once construction begins. Niven said he expects to be clearing the ground by January.
“Chelsea is a young city (in terms of residents),” Niven said. “We have 1,200 kids that play sports. We have 445 that play baseball on four fields. We’re excited about providing more facilities for our youth.
“At the same time, we’re excited about the community center that’s going up,” he added. “Chelsea is such a growing place that we’re just trying to stay up with the needs that we recognize in our city.”