Months, even years, of thinking and planning by city officials and community leaders are about to bear fruit after the Brownwood City Council this week approved bids for the construction of an aquatic center in Bowie and the renovation of the Brownwood Coliseum Annex to serve as a senior citizens center.

On Tuesday, the council awarded bids of $1.67 million to The Fain Group for the construction of the aquatic center, and $627,875 for the renovation of the coliseum annex.

This is a project that won the solid endorsement of Brownwood voters in May 2008 when they authorized using a portion of the municipal sales taxes levied for economic development to help fund it. The vote was necessary to comply with state law as it existed when the economic development corporation was established also in a local election almost 20 years ago. But that requirement also signaled to municipal officials as other citizens involved in the project that the community understands this is a worthwhile endeavor.

The aquatic center will not only provide an enhanced quality of life for Brownwood residents, but it will also serve as another reason for visitors to come to this city. Employers trying to recruit workers will be able to point to the center as an advantage the community offers them.

And anyone who participates in, or just visited, the popular senior citizens program knows a better facility is overdue.

Now, with the planning behind us, the construction can begin.

Brownwood Bulletin