KENMORE — Construction will soon be underway on the Rhododendron Park Boathouse.
The 2,800 square-foot pre-fabricated steel structure built on a concrete slab, will be the new home for four of Northshore School District's high school crew teams and the Kenmore Rowing Club (KRC). It will also be used for learn-to-row programs and summer youth rowing camps.
“I am thrilled that we've broken ground as we create a place that our high school crew teams can call their own,” said Northshore School District Superintendent Michelle Reid. “Thanks to the commitment of our partner, the city of Kenmore, students across the district can engage in a sport that helps build physical and mental stamina for competition, that creates close bonds among fellow rowers, and that even leads to new college scholarship opportunities.
Reid encourages the community to "imagine the possibilities,"she said, "as we grow into one of the largest and most successful public-school crew programs in the country." The 40-foot by 70-foot building will provide an enclosed storage area for 24 to 36 rowing shells and will also include a small second-story mezzanine area for exercise machines, meetings and coaching space.
“The Kenmore Rowing Club started about five years ago with the goal of bringing rowing to the Northshore community,” said Pam Marshall, president of the Kenmore Rowing Club. “A boathouse has been our goal from the beginning and is vital for the continued growth of both KRC and Northshore School junior rowing. We are grateful for the vision and enthusiastic support from the city of Kenmore and city council, King County, and the Pocock Rowing Foundation for furthering the dream of Northshore rowing.”
The Kenmore City Council awarded a $1,195,826 bid to Gencap Construction Corporation on March 16 to erect the structure.
“Construction was originally scheduled to begin in April, but COVID-related issues delayed the start,” said Kenmore Parks Project Manager Rob Sayre-McCord. “The project will be finished this winter.”
The boathouse borders the Sammamish Slough, which makes it convenient to put crafts in the water.
A break-down of funding for the project can be viewed on the city of Kenmore website.
In 2017, the city of Kenmore completed a walkway across Rhododendron Park’s wetland, and a new boarding float on the river and improved parking facilities as well. The improvements support water access for a variety of hand-carried watercraft.