TURLOCK -- City Council members indicated they would hold a place in the redevelopment budget to rebuild the Carnegie Arts Center but said the project needs a business plan for final approval.
Councilman Ted Howze said he would vote for the project if its operation and maintenance did not come from city coffers.
The council, sitting as the Redevelopment Agency, did not approve before press time the $25 million redevelopment budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1.
Howze, Councilwoman Amy Bublak and Councilman Kurt Spycher asked for extra time for community groups to put together a plan to run the facility.
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"We required a business plan of the BMX bike park," Bublak said, noting the detail required of the smaller project.
Audience members held up fluorescent pink cards urging the council to approve rebuilding the Carnegie "NOW."
"We cannot ask for a better building climate," Councilwoman Mary Jackson said. "I don't think we (can) waste any more time."
Last week, bids on the Carnegie project came in at less than the $7.8 million architect's estimate for construction -- as low as $5.3 million.
There is $7.7 million identified to fund the Carnegie reconstruction, said Mike Pitcock, director of development services. About $3 million would come from the Redevelopment Agency.
A redevelopment agency helps fund larger public projects, eliminate neighborhood blight and encourage economic development.
The Carnegie renovation has been a decade in the making. In 2005, burglars burned the arts center to cover their tracks in the middle of a renovation.
The city has spent $840,000 in redevelopment funds for architectural design and plans. The city Arts Commission expects art shows, theater groups, lecturers, fund- raisers, classes, business meetings, weddings and other social gatherings.
Council members also discussed building a water spray park at Columbia Park.
"This is one of the most important projects to me," Spycher said.
In other action, the City Council:
Unanimously approved rezoning to allow a wedding chapel, an events center, an ice cream parlor and warehouse at West Main Street and North Soderquist Road.