BURLEY • The Oregon Trail Recreation District plans to approach the Burley City Council today with a proposal for a new recreation center.

Oregon Trail Recreation District Chairman Scott Horsley said the recreation district committee would like to build the center on city-owned land north of Salmon Park.

Horsley said the project would likely progress in phases with the first phase consisting of a 9,800-square-foot building housing a full-sized basketball court, concessions area, restrooms and office and storage space.

The district’s committee proposal will ask the city to extend a long-term lease or deed the property to the district.

The rough cost estimate is $400,000, Horsley said.

The center would accommodate the growing interest in organized youth sports leagues like basketball and volleyball.

“We can go on and on and add uses from there, including making the center the permanent home for the festival of trees,” said Horsley.

A second phase would include another full-sized basketball court.

Horsely said the proposed site would lie adjacent to ground earmarked for a new library, a project on hold after voters turned down a $3.2 million bond issue in May.

The recreation center would fit on the southwestern corner of the property and leave plenty of room for a new library in the future, Horsley said.

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Horsley said the district would not need to ask voters for additional money through a bond issue election and costs would be paid for through the yearly recreation district assessment fee revenues, grants and donations.

“We would ask civic groups to participate and solicit private donations,” Horsley said.

The recreation district was established in 2006 and assesses a yearly household fee of $36, which generates about $170,000 for the district.

Since its inception, the district has participated in several recreational improvements, including upgrading park restrooms, revamping the swimming pool and the ongoing Burley greenbelt project.

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