The CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs Senior Center will not return to the Woodbine Street location it left earlier this year, Garland County and the hospital said earlier this week.
Hospital President Tony Houston told the Garland County Quorum Court Finance Committee Monday night the center will eventually be relocated to the CHI St. Vincent campus. In the interim, The Warehouse at 301 Broadway St. will serve as a temporary location effective Monday, the hospital announced.
Hours will be Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., with lunch service from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
CHI St. Vincent had operated the senior center at the old Hot Springs National Guard Armory on Woodbine since 1991, leasing it from the county for $1 a year. Mold problems caused by a leaky roof ended the partnership, but the hospital continued providing services at the McAuley Center in Hot Springs Village.
"We've had a lot going on the last four years, and now we're able to address our comprehensive senior services," Houston told justices of the peace. "We have loads of expanded programming we'd like to bring, and we think being on campus will give us an opportunity to do that even better.
"We're grateful to the (quorum court) and the county for allowing us to be at Woodbine for all these years. It makes sense now in our life cycle to go ahead and come back on campus."
The $200,000 appropriation ordinance the Finance Committee advanced Monday night will help the county reopen the National Register of Historic Places site, putting a new roof on the building, remediating mold issues that forced the senior center to relocate and gutting the interior, the county said.
The county will pay for the improvements from its general fund rather than accept the Department of Arkansas Heritage Historical Preservation Restoration grant the Area Agency on Aging of West Central Arkansas applied for on the county's behalf.
Agreeing to a conservation easement committing the county to maintain the historic character of the building is a condition of the grant, limiting future uses of the building and requiring any changes to its facade to be approved by the granting agency.
According to the January 2017 application to add the building to the National Register of Historic Places, it was built in 1937 for $40,000 by the Works Progress Administration and repurposed into a senior center in 1982.
"The grant was intended for us to keep senior services (at the Armory), but as we looked at the comprehensive opportunities we decided to come back on campus and allow you to do what is best for the county with the Armory," Houston told JPs.
If the quorum court adopts the spending ordinance next week, general fund appropriations will rise to 85.69 percent of the more than $21 million in anticipated 2018 revenue, the county's finance office said. State law prohibits funds from being appropriated beyond 90 percent of expected revenue.
Local on 08/09/2018
Print Headline: Senior center will not return to Armory; county advances measure to make repairs