Construction of the highly anticipated Junior Lifeguard Building will begin in September, following the award of a $6.4 million contract approved by the City Council on August 23. The new facility is expected to be completed by Memorial Day 2023, in time for the summer season.
The Council voted unanimously to approve a contract with Orange-based TELACU Construction Management, Inc. to build a 5,400 square-foot facility near the Balboa Pier that will serve as a permanent home for the City’s popular Junior Lifeguard program. The building will be available for various public uses when the Junior Lifeguard program is not in session.
The total project cost of $7.8 million will be paid mostly through federal funds received by the City through the American Rescue Plan Act ($5.2 million), and private donations to the Junior Lifeguard Foundation ($2.051 million). The project was approved by California Coastal Commission on March 9.
The new facility will replace a temporary trailer that lacks water and sewer connections. The new building will include administrative and event space, expanded storage, locker rooms, and private and public restrooms. Construction will include improvements to Parking Lot A near the Balboa Pier, including the installation of electric vehicle charging stations.
The Newport Beach Junior Lifeguard program, established in 1984, is one of the City’s most popular youth education programs, employing about 60 instructors and averaging about 1,350 participants each summer. The seven-week program operates from late June through early August.
The City’s Recreation and Senior Services Department will manage the facility when it is not being used for the Junior Lifeguard program. Potential public uses include fitness classes, education courses, facility rentals, and community meetings.