Inspector - Gym could be repaired for about $20,000

By ED HOWELL, Daily Mountain Eagle
Posted 4/21/17

CARBON HILL - The cost of air conditioning repairs at the Blue Gym in Carbon Hill will be less costly than expected — and one inspector said the gym is actually in good shape to be used with some clean up.

“”You …

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Inspector - Gym could be repaired for about $20,000


CARBON HILL - The cost of air conditioning repairs at the Blue Gym in Carbon Hill will be less costly than expected — and one inspector said the gym is actually in good shape to be used with some clean up.

“”You don’t have to buy new with everything,” said Steve Mitchell of Advanced Mechanical of Carbon Hill. “New will break you. Something used can be repaired.” He added, “If those (air conditioning) units (in the back area) were sitting at my house, I would repair them.”

Mitchell took several hours in an inspection at the gym. He gave a report at a work session on Monday for the Carbon Hill Council.

Essentially, two units can be replaced and two units repaired, all for up to $20,000. The work, which could be done in about a month’s time, could be taken out of the $32,973 in the city’s improvement fund.

“That is practically half priced,” Chambers said. “That’s all of it working.” He noted the new quote includes repairs to the concession area, which were not considered originally when the gym repairs were first discussed.

Mitchell said the gym needed a great deal of community service work to clean up the facility.

“That gym needs a lot of people to go through there. You would be shocked with what you can do with elbow grease,” he said. “That gym needs it. There are a lot of things in that gym that work totally fine. There is nothing wrong with it. It is not as in bad as you think when you look from the outside.”

The two units in the back were said in earlier estimates to be needing replacing and would cost $20,000 alone, Mitchell and Mayor Mark Chambers said.

“Both of the units are repairable,” he said, with no copper taken from the commercial units. The repairs could be done for $8,600, he said, noting some damage was due from sitting idle. “They both need a lot of attention,” he said, but added, “There is no call for new units in the back.” 

In the concession area, above the drop in ceiling, were once two machines that cooled the restrooms and foyer area, but those units have been carefully removed without damaging the area around it. New machines will need to be replaced, but Mitchell said a good price could likely be obtained, probably for $8,000.

Overall, Mitchell said the cost of the four units would be $16,674.80 and if all the heating parts have to be replaced, that would be another $3,500.

“We can get the gym back up operational,” he said, adding that he will donate about $3,000 in lights that he already had accumulated over the years. He is also donating labor on the electrical system.

“The units in the back have heat, by the way. We’re going to repair those heating units,” Mitchell said, adding that some testing of equipment amazingly went well, considering what they have been through.

In addition, the council heard Mitchell recommend that a ductless air conditioner and heater unit in the city dispatching area of Carbon Hill City Hall, although he did not have a price recommendation that night. The council recently talked about putting a unit in that area, as no permanent heating or cooling unit is installed there.

Chambers said officials are also talking of hiring Greg Edwards, who is president of a local youth association, to work part-time to open up the gym and run it. Chambers said Edwards, who does much volunteer work already, would not require much to in pay. That situation may be brought up at the next regular scheduled meeting on Thursday at 6 p.m.

In some of the other action that night, the council:

•heard Edwards say that the Dizzy Dean program has changed, with cursing and fighting seen at children’s ballgames. He said a zero tolerance policy is now in place for coach, parents and others, so that they can no longer smoke, drink, curse or fight in front of the players, whose ages range from 3-13. Officials countywide are not letting that slide, so any violation means the adult is banned from any park in the county. “If the city doesn’t back your park on that, the county will quit giving tournaments to the city,” he said, noting money can be made from the tournaments.

•heard Edwards request use of a city lift to install some lights at the Little League fields, which the mayor said would not be a problem. Manpower and materials are already arranged. The lift will save $500, which the program does not have.

•heard Carolyn Barnett propose a flea market on a parking lot at the double softball fields, as she said people from surrounding counties have expressed interest if one is held in Carbon Hill. She asked the city to start the flea market, but city officials said they would prefer her or a committee to organize it. “The city can’t put an employee down there,” Chambers said, although the city would take care of landscaping, accept payments in advance for vending and promote it. At Barnett’s suggestion, the council also talked about whether to exempt sales taxes for the vendor’s sales.

A vote to allow her to have it is expected on Thursday.