AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) — Augusta facing some big dollar decision at the Boathouse.
“You look at the handicap accessibility, just the ongoing maintenance issues at the building, I have a little bit of heartburn right now spending that kind of money to repair a building that we could potentially be looking at replacing,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Brandon Garrett.
The Boathouse is full of mold after a water main break, it forced the Rowing Club out of the building. The recommendation was to use up to $500,000 to remediate the mold but some commissioners saying that doesn’t make sense for a building in such poor shape.
“You’re talking about spending anywhere from five to seven million dollars or you’re talking a half a million or so on remediation, either way, it’s a lot of money in my opinion you don’t remediate a building that really needs to come down,” said Commissioner Alvin Mason.
Commissioners agreeing, voting to go out for bids on the costs to tear down The Boathouse, rejecting the option of spending nearly six million dollars on renovation and remediation.
“No sir, absolutely not, for that much we can tear it down and do something different,” said Commissioner Catherine Smith McKnight.
But by not fixing the mold problem, the city will need to sit back down with the Rowing Club to determine what the club will need in the short term to stay operational.
“We have to put the onus back on them to let us know what their needs are at that particular time once we have that discussion, we can bring that back before this body,” said Parks and Recreation Director Maurice McDowell.
It’s been a problem that has been festering, but now the city now has set a new course at the Boathouse.