Select Boards of both Rumford and Mexico voted unanimously on Feb. 12 to share the $9,700 cost of an engineer site selection proposal, the next step in an effort to develop at recreation center for the River Valley. From left are Rumford Town Manager Stacy Carter, Rumford Board Chairman Chris Brennick and Rumford Selectman Frank DiConzo. Bruce Farrin/Rumford Falls Times


MEXICO — After months of discussion, the effort to establish a community recreation center is moving ahead.
Select Boards of both Rumford and Mexico voted unanimously on Feb. 12 to share the $9,700 cost of an engineer site selection proposal.
Chris Brennick, chairman of the Rumford board, said Rumford and Mexico recreation directors, several community members, and others have been meeting to explore the types of programs that currently exist, as well as exploring getting a new facility to try to bring down the overhead in running programs through two older existing facilities.
As part of that, six sites in Rumford and Mexico have been identifed as to where a facility could be built.
Brennick said Mexico’s sites are Wallach’s Field on the Roxbury Road and the present site of the Mexico Rec Center, which would be torn down if selected.
Sites in Rumford are between the football field and the tennis courts on Hosmer Field, on the other side of the dirt road at Hosmer Field where there are presently buildings, the old Stephens High School lot, and near Hosmer Field on Falmouth Street.
The engineer site selection proposal by local engineer Rob Prue would involve preparing a conceptual building floor plan to assist in evaluating these sites for development.
The cost share of the two towns was established by Rumford Economic Developer George O’Keefe, based on the 2010 census population, which lists Rumford at 5,841 people and Mexico with 1,743, with Rumford assuming 77 percent ($7,471) of the cost, with Mexico’s share at $2,229.
Mexico board Chairman Richard Philbrick asked, “What is this $9,700 going to do for us?”
O’Keefe said, “The committee, so far, identified six sites — two in Mexico and four in Rumford.”
He said Prue would visit each site. “The particular concern is looking at the size of each site and make sure that the facility that is intended to be built will fit on the given parcel.”
Brennick said, “This is something that I’ve wanted to be the driving force behind and I think it would be real good thing for this area.”
With this $9,700, he said, “We can develop some kind of concept and begin to shape a vision, and then go to the citizens and say, ‘This is our vision. Do we have your support?'”
Rumford Selectman Peter Chase that the goal is to build a bigger picture, hopefully draw public support, and to increase their ability to get grants to build a recreational facility.
“Hopefully, this would serve as a River Valley facility,” he said.
[email protected]

Comments are not available on this story.

filed under: