Nearly two years after heavy rains caused part of the roof to collapse, the Comer Center is officially open.
James Worsley, director of the Columbus Parks and Recreation department, welcomed people Thursday to the grand reopening ceremony.
Built in 1941 and for years known as the Comer Auditorium or Comer Gym, the 28,500-square-foot Bibb City landmark has undergone an extensive renovation after it was heavily damaged in a September 2011 storm.
The strong storm ruined the hardwood basketball court floor and flooded basement rooms that housed offices and some of the building's mechanical systems. An entire wall and the roof had to be replaced, as did the hardwood floors. New mechanical systems were installed and drainage around the building was improved. The iconic cupola atop the building was renovated extensively.
The price tag for the repairs was about $2 million, $830,000 of which was covered by insurance. The rest came from Local Option Sales Tax funds.
In addition to the new floor, the center now has a new game room; a new activity room for reading, playing cards and other small group activities; a new break room; new restrooms; and a new staircase.
The facility also includes a workspace for police officers to stop in and complete reports, and will again house the Recreation Services Division Office. Rooms in the Comer Center will be available for community meetings and rentals.