It’s been three months to the day and, yet, the Bogert Park pavilion shell still sits just as it has since part of its roof caved in.
Many wonder what’s going on while the city says they’ve run into their own hurdles fixing it.
You may notice that the scene in Bogert Park might seem familiar.
The only thing that has changed is time and a few more fence posts put around the shell to keep people from putting themselves in any possible danger.
With the farmer’s market having just now opened for its first night this summer, many wonder what’s the holdup?
“It’s really our only covered space in the wintertime for ice skating and hockey and it’s really important,” says Jon Henderson, strategic services director for the City of Bozeman.
The pool is open…
“You can’t do any better than the pool,” says Kristina Rogers, who frequently stops by Bogert.
The park is open…
Yet, three months later, the shell is still fenced off tight.
“It doesn’t look like a whole lot is going on yet,” Rogers says.
Kristina Rogers is one of many who have enjoyed Bogert Park for decades.
“I’ve been coming to the park for 40 some years,” Rogers says. “I was so disappointed when the roof collapsed.”
And with the Bogert Farmer’s Market changing venues, moving over to Lindley Park nearby, she’s a little worried.
“I’m just kind of concerned about the parking because there isn’t a whole lot of parking around Lindley,” Rogers says. “It’s always tough at Sweetpea time but at least they are going to still have it.”
While more fences have shown up, the shell remains the same as it did in March.
The city says 10 exposed beams on each side of the shell are a concern as they could look like the beam where the initial collapse happened.
You can see that rotten wood.
“It’s really just the exposed ends of the beams,” Henderson says. “There are ten beams in total, so there are twenty ends and it’s really just the part of the beam that’s been exposed to the elements for 40-plus years.”
That is why the city does say, while they did not get insurance money, the hope is still a good one.
“I think this incident has really elevated that conversation and awareness to really how important these facilities are as a public asset.”
Henderson adds that the time since the partial collapse has been working towards pricing and assessing what needs to happen next.
“We’ve been working hard over those three months to obtain cost estimates for repair,” Henderson says. “We’ve gone through a local engineering firm who’s worked with a local contractor to give us good estimates on a couple of different options.”
Options, yes — insurance coverage, no.
“They’ve just recently given us a determination that they are not going to provide any coverage for this as a result of the existing dry rot that is an explicit exclusion within our policy, unfortunately,” Henderson says.
Working with the parks and over divisions, Henderson wants to make sure the shell doesn’t disappear.
It will be expensive, six-figures expensive.
“It does look like it will exceed a six-figure dollar amount but we are looking at a variety of options. We hope to bring that back to the commission around the middle of July.”
“We really are taking this seriously and want to make sure that we can repair what’s there,” Henderson says. “At the end of the day, it’s going to be up to our elected officials to help us work through this process and we’ll be anxious to hear their guidance.”
And for those like Rogers, they just want the pavilion, too.
“This park is just pure Bozeman after all of these years,” Rogers says.
When asked if there is a possibility of losing the shell altogether, Henderson said that’s not the plan.