SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Springdale residents will be voting on a special bond that could potentially build a new senior center on Emma Street in Springdale.
Early voting for local special elections started Tuesday in Springdale. Residents can now decide whether to pass or fail to refinance Springdale bonds. If the vote passes to refinance the bonds it would free up money in the city’s general fund allowing the city to build projects like a new senior center.
“We’re going to have a great area for fitness, two pickleball courts inside on the second floor. We’re going to have a great meeting area that’s much larger than the space that we have now,” said Colby Fulfer, the chief of staff for the mayor of Springdale.
Fulfer says each year 1,000 people come to the senior center and think it’s best to double the size of the facility.
“This current location is 20,000 square feet. We’re going to double that size on Emma, and it’s going to be next to The Jones Center,” Fulfer said.
For seniors like Thelma Ryker whose been attending the center for almost four years having more space for activities is important.
“A lot of people would just sit at home and not do much of anything, or even sit down here. So, I think it keeps our minds and bodies active,” Ryker said.
Ryker says her husband passed away two years ago, so she says this center has opened up a door to new friendships.
“I met so many nice people that had the same background I did and we were in the same boat. We play bingo. We play cards. We have baseball,” Ryker said.
Fulfer says the seniors here deserve so much and that includes a new facility.
“They’ve been with us for many decades. They’ve paid a lot of taxes in this city and we want to make sure that they’re taken care of in this bond program,” Fulfer said.
Fulfer says the first questions on the ballot are about the financing of the bond, and that has to be approved by voters before they can move forward with a new senior center.