The City of Fircrest has scheduled the grand opening of its new 15,000 square-foot community center for April 26, completing the $18 million replacement of the recreational complex in the heart of the city.
A ribbon-cutting and community celebration is scheduled for 5 pm. The event, which will include a drumline, color guard, and various sports activities, is free and open to the public. The grand opening celebration also will include special recognition of the Names Family Foundation, which contributed more than $4 million to the project.
“Even with construction delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the global supply chain challenges, we are opening the community center about a year ahead of schedule thanks to incredible support from voters, donors, and the Legislature,” said Fircrest Mayor Brett L. Wittner. “Fircrest residents had a lot of input in the design, and the City Council and staff are excited to show off the amazing result.”
The Roy H. Murphy Community Center, named in honor of Fircrest’s first superintendent of parks and recreation who later became the town administrator, includes a high school-sized gymnasium, a large multi-purpose room, a fitness instruction room, a teen room, and a comfortable lounge area. An outdoor plaza and pedestrian path improve the connection to the new pool and Fircrest Park.
Fircrest voters approved a park bond in April 2019 to help fund the replacement of the nearly 60-year-old pool and community center. The Edwards Family Aquatic Center opened in the summer of 2021, thanks in part to a $2 million donation by the William and Joyce Edwards Foundation. The project also includes funding from the City of Fircrest and two grants from the State of Washington that were secured by support from legislators representing the 28th Legislative District.
The park bond approved by Fircrest voters included $13.5 million in General Obligation bonds for the project. Due to the amount of generous donations and State funding, the City will use less than $10 million of the $13.5 million approved in bonds.
The project was designed by ARC Architects, and Kassel Construction was the general contractor.