When Pritchard Community Center in Elizabethtown — a long-time hub of city and county functions — finally reopens its doors to the public, residents will notice quite a few updates.

For instance, the Oak room will have access to new bathrooms and a new kitchen­ette, the skylights now feature shutters, and the entrance to Pritchard now offers a covering from the weather.

The renovations to the center have been in the works for a couple years, however, construction began around April on the $1.9 million project. According to Director of Facilities Management Scott Reynolds, they are on schedule to finish by July 31.

On Monday, crews were prepping the Pine and Oak rooms for new flooring. Reynolds said instead of carpet, those two rooms will now feature rubber flooring, which he said is more sport-friendly and also will better handle the abuse of table and chairs.

The Oak room will be striped for tennis and basketball while the Pine room will be striped for volleyball and basketball.

With the Oak room now featuring access to bathrooms and a kitchenette, it alleviates guests using that room from having to travel through the Pine room to get to amenities.

“Now no one needs to intermingle among parties,” said Amy Inman of city public relations.

The smaller Mulberry and Sycamore meeting rooms also will feature kitchenettes and the main lobby of the building will have a kiosk.

New LED lighting was installed throughout the building as well as new gutters around the building and a hands-free entry into the building. Reynolds said they also installed a new sanitary sewer system, a major driver for the project. New transfer switches also were installed.

“Those are all the things that people don’t see but are important to our buildings to make them function properly,” he said.

The one thing that will be missing when doors reopen is the weight room. That space was used to add a new bathrooms. The building also now will be Americans with Disabilities Act accessible.

During Monday’s Eliza­beth­town City Council, councilman Matt Deneen touted the renovations done thus far.

“I’m glad to see those renovations,” he said.

Pritchard Community Cen­ter — named for former Elizabethtown mayor and industrial foundation president James R. Pritchard — opened May 1, 1979.

Along with being designated a community disaster shelter, Prit­chard has for numerous years been home for several events such as the Hardin County Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon, the Lincoln Trail Home Builders Show, the National Wild Turkey Federation fundraising banquet, the Ancestral Trails Book Fair, the Shriners Brotherhood banquet, Central Hardin High School prom and the Kentucky Kids Consignment Sale.

The Arboretum and Botanical Gardens also is at the center.

Mary Alford can be reached at 270-505-1741 or malford@thenewsenterprise.com.

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