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The Dickson City Council has approved the purchase of the Dickson Athletic Club to become the new location of the Dickson Senior Center.

In a pair of 6-2 votes at its November meeting, the council amended the purchase price to $1.75 million and approved on second and final reading an ordinance authorizing Mayor Don L. Weiss Jr. to execute the documents required to purchase the facility on Payne Springs Road.

Councilmen Dwight Haynes and Michael Outlaw voted against both measures.

At a special session Oct. 19, the council reduced the price from $1.9 million to $1.6 million and asked Weiss and City Administrator Rydell Wesson to continue negotiations with Dickson Athletic Club owners Dan and Sharon Smith.

At the November meeting, Wesson said the Smiths had agreed to a purchase price of $1.75 million. Wesson said he and Senior Center Director Joan Rial met with the Smiths to revise the list of equipment that will be included with the purchase.

Wesson also presented an itemized list of estimates for renovations to the building showing a cost range of $291,740-$320,740, with the biggest expense being an estimated $75,000-$100,000 for a commercial kitchen.

In proposing the purchase in September, Wesson recommended the city use some of its $18 million fund balance to pay for buying the building. The money for the renovations will come from a loan up to $4 million that will include the construction of a third fire station at an estimated $3.3 million.

Wesson said the city hopes to open the Senior Center at its new location in July. He said an option of building a new 20,000-25,000-square-foot facility at an estimated cost of $3.6 million-$4.5 million would take at least two years to complete.

Rial told the council reaction to the proposed purchase has been overwhelmingly positive with many participants excited to have access to DAC’s outdoor and enclosed swimming pools for low-impact exercise programs.

Chief Jeff Lewis has said the Dickson Police Department is interested in using the current 11,446-square-foot Senior Center building on West Walnut Street for offices and a training facility.

The next city council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 7 in the council chambers at Dickson City Hall. Dickson City Council meetings are broadcast on Local Cable Access Channel 19 on Comcast at 8 p.m. on Thursdays and Saturdays.

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