Fairgrounds restroom design OK’d

(Posted June 15, 2017)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

Madison County commissioners meetings aren’t always about ditch petitions and zoning regulations. Sometimes, they’re about restrooms.

On June 12, the commissioners approved the final design for rebuilding the restrooms located just outside the grandstands at the Madison County Fairgrounds in London. Work on the project will start after this year’s fair, in late July or August.

Currently, the cement block building does not meet federal handicap accessibility requirements. Additionally, the toilets are rusty, and the propane hot water tanks outside the building pose a safety hazard.

“We’re putting in a new concrete floor, we’ll take care of any step issues, and there will be handrails, handicap showers, and handicap bathroom stalls,” said Commissioner Mark Forrest.

The women’s side of the building will include four bathroom stalls and two showers. The men’s side will include three bathroom stalls, three urinals, and two showers. One stall and one shower per side will be handicap accessible. New fixtures and equipment will be installed.

“It’s something that is greatly needed,” said Darrell Champer, president of the Madison County Fair Board.

He said the restroom facility is rarely used now because of its poor condition.

With the construction of new buildings and other improvements on the grounds in the last few years, the fairgrounds is booking more and more events.

“There aren’t enough restrooms on the grounds for those (by the grandstands) not to be in good shape,” Champer said.

The showers come in handy for youths and adults alike who spend their week at the annual county fair. They offer a chance to freshen up between shows or after working in one of the arenas or animal barns. The same goes for anyone involved in other multi-day events at the grounds other times of the year, Champer said.

Now that the design is approved, the next step is to collect cost estimates for the project. The county has $56,000 in state Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to put toward the project. The county will be responsible for covering any costs over that amount.

CDC of Ohio, the consulting firm that handles the county’ CDBG funding, and architectural firm Segna Associates are gathering the estimates.

In other action on June 12, the commissioners approved the appointment of London resident Henry Comer to the Metropolitan Housing Authority board. He will complete the unexpired term of Steve Rodgers.

Forrest said Comer is a good fit because of his involvement in the community, both as a civic leader and a business owner.

“There’s a good feeling you bring when you walk in a room,” Forrest said to Comer, explaining that such an ability is an asset to any organization.

The commissioners also acknowledged the reappointment of Rob Slane, county administrator, to the Madison County Local Emergency Planning Committee.

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