"When it gets loaded in here, it's a challenge" to drive around, he
But soon enough, the tricky turning situation should have a solution:
the Sea Base is planning a major expansion, which will not only address
its traffic concerns but lay the foundation for future growth.
The $4.5-million project, which is scheduled to begin in the fall of
next year, will see construction of a range of new facilities. The
simplest of them, an additional driveway, should make a major difference
in the ease of traffic flow into and out of the center, Mountford said.
But the project goes far beyond a few yards of asphalt. It will also
bring construction of new classrooms and office space, an amphitheater
and other facilities.
Mountford said the initial plans were not so ambitious.
"We just needed more office space," he said. The current
administrative office crams desks for four employees into a small area
where it's difficult to pay attention to a single conversation or phone
But merely expanding the offices in the existing structure didn't seem
like a workable arrangement. It would have meant hacking space away from
the classroom, a scheme that didn't jibe very well with the center's
Instead, the base is going to add about 18,000 square feet of interior
space split between new construction and the renovation of existing
structures -- an expansion that Mountford says should give the Scouts
breathing room well into the future.
The scouts hope the larger facilities will help the base handle more
sailors and students. Projects like this month's outreach effort to
students from Stanton are something the base hopes to host more
frequently in the years ahead, Mountford said.
Kent Gibbs, executive director of the Orange County Council of the Boy
Scouts of America, said efforts to find funding for the project, which
will come entirely from private sources, have so far met with encouraging
"We've had an awful lot of people who have given individual
contributions through their personal foundations and also just out of
their own pockets," he said.
But Gibbs said the search for enough money to properly endow the
facility would be a challenge.
"Ongoing [financial support] is always the biggest issue," he said.
Features of the Boy Scout Sea Base expansion:
* Redesigned parking lot entrance and exit
* Equipment storage and maintenance room
A new building featuring:
* three new classrooms
* lounge and conference center
* administrative offices
* shower/restroom facilities
Source: Orange County Council, Boy Scouts of America