By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EVERETT — Everett Community College’s timeworn gym has been demolished and construction on its replacement is expected to begin next week.
The gym, which opened in 1958, was razed to make room for expanding facilities at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett’s Colby Campus.
A $19.5 million fitness center, which will serve college sports teams and the entire student body, is expected to open by the end of September 2010, said Katherine Schiffner, an EvCC spokeswoman. It will be built along Tower Street just east of the campus.
Construction money comes from existing college funds and student fees. Students voted to pay 40 percent of the cost of the gym in spring 2007.
The general contractor is California-based Panattoni Construction Inc., which has 20 offices around the country, including Seattle.
The 50,000-square-foot gym will include retractable bleacher seating for 2,250 people, a cardio and free-weight training room, a climbing wall, a running track, a juice and sandwich bar, another small gym, faculty offices and classroom space. It is designed to promote energy efficiency.
“The gym will be large enough that we can host graduation,” Schiffner said.
The entire gym floor of the old building has been removed and will be used on one of the walls in the new center.
One hundred bricks from the old building also were given to the EvCC Foundation. They could end up being used as a walkway to the new gym.
Neighbors were curious what would happen to two rhododendrons outside the old gym, Schiffner said. They have been transplanted between Jackson and Glacier halls.
The old gym bleachers won’t be recycled. College officials couldn’t find a taker, Schiffner said.
“They even delayed the project for two weeks while they tried to find someone to take them,” she said.
While the new gym is being built, PE and health classes will be taught at the Broadway Center near campus and in the old Rite Aid Pharmacy building in the College Plaza Shopping Center.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, email@example.com.