Poulsbo Events, Recreation Center closer to reality

The Poulsbo City Council held its second workshop for the Poulsbo Events and Recreation Center, where a draft resolution regarding scope, funding and history was presented.

On Sept. 13, the council will hold a workshop for capital projects prioritization and funding mechanisms, which the PERC and additional land acquisition needed for Phases 2 and 3 will be considered. At the council’s Sept. 20 meeting, it will vote on the PERC resolution. If it passes, it will declare the council’s intent to develop Phase 1 of the PERC through partnership with the Kitsap Public Facilities District and to pursue implementation of Phases 2 and 3.

Below is information from the draft resolution

Phases 1-3

It is the city’s intent to develop Phase 1 (two turf tournament fields and outdoor amenities) of PERC with KPFD providing 67% of the funding, and the city with 33%, city documents state. The preliminary cost estimate is $11.7 million—with KPFD paying $7.84 million and the city $3.86 million. The city will seek grant assistance and other funding. Phase 1 final cost estimates will be developed upon preparation of final design and/or plans, specifications and estimates. The project must be a minimum of $10 million as required by state statute.

Upon construction, it is the city’s responsibility to own and maintain PERC. The council also hopes to complete PERC Phase 2 (recreational facility) and Phase 3 (outdoor recreation pool). Additional land acquisition is necessary, and the council has directed staff to evaluate parcels that may be suitable. Funding sources other than the KPFD are necessary for Phases 2 and 3 along with voted bonds or a metropolitan park district.

The council intends to continue to work with community agencies, specifically Olympic College and Western Washington University, in their plans to expand their degree offerings. The phase 2 recreation and event facility would significantly support, complement and forward the strategic plans of both colleges, per documents.


The council directed staff to coordinate with KPFD for $1.7 million to complete the following:Phase 1: Topographic survey, geotechnical investigations, land use and environmental permitting, completion of preliminary civil site improvement/utility plans, architectural building design (if needed), preparation of 30/60/90/100 plans, specifications and estimate, project management and development of bid documents.

Phases 2 and 3: Additional feasibility analysis including: finalization of facility programming and size; operations evaluation and staffing; facility management analysis; maintenance analysis; cost estimate for building construction; and financial revenue and expenditure analysis for operations and maintenance.

The additional analysis is intended to be used when additional land acquisition is made, and the final two phases can move forward. The city intends to finalize with KPFD to: identify the preferred bonding structure; final funding split amounts; and action for the construction of the PERC Phase 1 project.


The Olhava Master Plan land use site plan from July 1995 included a community park to satisfy the city’s park mitigation of the proposed residential and commercial uses. The Poulsbo Park Commission recommended and City Council identified ballfields as the preferred use. It became part of the city’s six-year Capital Improvement Program in 2000, city documents state. Western Development deeded the park property to the city in 2009, but the city did not have funding to develop the ballfields.

In 2018, the KPFD called for proposals for public agencies for regional events, sports and recreation facilities. KPFD is authorized to provide project funding for public facilities that provide economic impact, benefit residents and communities, cost over $10 million and have at least one-third in matching funds from a public partner.

The city submitted a proposal to KPFD for an event and recreational facility. The city then presented its plan to the KPFD . On July 29, 2019, KPFD ranked the PERC second out of seven projects. KPFD funded $243,900 for the city to conduct a feasibility study that would include: community outreach, market analysis, concept plan/location and financial analysis. The city hosted an online survey to gauge community interest and preferences on indoor and outdoor recreation, recreational programming and events.

A PERC steering committee met eight times and advised the city and PERC. The city hired BERK Consulting to conduct research and prepare a market analysis. It found:Aquatic centers have strong community interest but indoor aquatics is a saturated market, so an outdoor pool might be feasible.

Tournament fields were found to be feasible with two on-site and combined with other turf fields into a marketing package.

Event spaces were found to be potentially feasible if designed as adaptable multi-use facilities that can support niche markets.

The city hired ARC Architects and Bruce Dees and Associates Landscape Architects to work with the city and PERC steering committee to evaluate the feasibility of building sports fields with outdoor and indoor recreation facilities. ARC met with the steering committee and identified three site and building options for the PERC site. The options were: two tournament turf fields and park amenities; one tournament field, recreation building and outdoor pool north/south orientation; and one tournament field, recreation building and outdoor pool east/west orientation.

The building options were: small: 29,000 square feet with high- school sized gym, recreation rooms, offices, event space for 200 people; medium: 46,000 square feet with high-school-sized gym, recreation rooms, offices, event space for 300 people; and large: 70,000 square feet with NBA-sized gym, indoor pool, recreation rooms, offices and event space for 450 people. The 2021 preliminary cost estimates for each were $8 million to $10 million; $30 million; and $45 million.

The PERC proposal was organized into three phases that represent the elements from the community survey, market analysis results, site evaluation results and PERC steering committee input: Phase 1: two tournament fields with outdoor recreation elements (walking circuit, sports courts, playground, parking/landscaping); Phase 2: Flexible event/meeting space and classrooms to host varied-sized community events, recreation gym and support to Olympic College/Western Washington University campus; and Phase 3: Outdoor warm water recreation pool with resort-type features.