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Senior Center to be renovated

About $600,000 in federal funds have been identified as the funding source for a major remodeling of the Prineville Senior Center
Prineville's Senior Center is about to get a major remodeling.
   Shirley Jacobs of the Prineville Soroptimist International, which owns the facility, explained that the the center's needs have expanded beyond what is presently available. Before being altered to fit its current use, the structure was, Jacobs said, a bowling alley. "Over the years," she added, "the center has been remodeled piecemeal. Now we're planning an overall renovation."
   Among the services provided at the Senior Center are meals for elderly and disabled residents. This year's Thanksgiving dinner, Jacobs pointed out, filled the center's main dining room to capacity. On other occasions, she added, the main dining area was also too small.
   Safety and upgrading the the center's kitchen facility is another reason behind the proposed renovation of the center. Plus the Soroptimists want to make the building more energy efficient. This may mean replacing the entire heating and cooling system.
   Other changes planned include a new floor and a covering for the front of the building. "Now the senior bus loads and unloads out in the open, on the icy parking lot. We need to make it more safe."
   Originally, about a year ago the remodeling project was limited to about $270,000. However, encouraged by the Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council, Jacobs said the Soroptimists are looking at more long-term needs.
   COIC officials have got on the band wagon and a total of about $600,000 in federal funds has been identified.
   The city is limited to a maximum of $750,000 in funding from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds. That money, earmarked for low to moderate income housing needs, can also be used for such projects as the Senior Center is proposing. With the cap of $750,000, that leaves about $150,000 for the city. City Planning Director Dick Brown said there are a couple of projects, but no applications along those lines have been made yet.
   Jacobs indicated a feasibility study on the Senior Center will begin, but did not offer any timeline on when construction could start.