Park dugouts tabled

Replacing dugouts at Veterans Memorial Park is delayed at least a month as more information can be obtained from the city’s insurance company, but Wapakoneta’s recreation director does not want to wait too long because he would like them ready for the spring sports season in April.

During Monday’s Wapakoneta City Recreation Board meeting, Recreation Director Jack Hayzlett presented two estimates to replace dugouts on the two larger baseball diamonds, where one first base dugout and one third base dugout were destroyed during the June 29 windstorm.

Safety-Service Director Bill Rains told board members he needed to check with the city’s insurance company about the claim to replace the two dugouts, Hayzlett said.

“I expressed my concern with the board because we need to get moving on these dugouts so we can get them done in March or early April so the spring baseball teams can use them,” Hayzlett said. “I would like to get them done as soon as possible, but I made it clear with the two bidding construction companies that if they can not begin soon that they not bother the diamonds so they can still be used.”

Hayzlett received bids from Benchmark Custom Homes for $5,369 per unit, for a total of $10,738, and Dave Steinke Home Improvement for a total of $12,175.

Hayzlett inquired about approving one of the two estimates contingent upon the information Rains learns from the insurance company, but the awarding of a contract was still tabled. Hayzlett also questioned Rains on how the insurance company could deny the claim, but Hayzlett  said he would approach the board again at the February meeting about awarding a contract.

In discussing the project with the contractors, Hayzlett said he instructed them to provide buildings identical or nearly the same as the existing structures. They offered to make wholesale improvements, but Hayzlett said only minor changes would be acceptable at this point.

The dugouts were destroyed when 90 mph winds ripped the roofs off and pushed over the back walls.

The windstorm also destroyed the dugouts at the Wapakoneta High School baseball diamond and did extensive damage to the high school baseball and softball diamonds.

Throughout the city, electrical power lines fell as well as many trees. Many residences and businesses experienced damage to roofs and facades. Millions of dollars in damage were recorded in the Auglaize County area.