Bainbridge Island project management firm OTWB Inc. will donate in-kind services valued at $10,000 to the Fort Ward Community Hall project.
The Bainbridge Island firm brings a project portfolio that includes the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle, the IslandWood education center on Bainbridge, the Northwest African American Museum, projects for Seattle University and a seismic upgrade to the King County Courthouse.
Every year, the 10-year-old firm donates a percentage of their gross proceeds to in-kind services on a project they feel will benefit the community. The effort to restore the historic Fort Ward bakery building as a neighborhood hall fit the bill.
“We really like local youth projects, projects with island-wide impact, and seeing young people leading and learning about civic involvement,” said Tina Gilbert, principal in OTWB. “We decided this was a good place to donate our resources.”
The in-kind services donation is the first for the building restoration effort, which formally launched with fundraising and outreach in December.
The donation brings the project’s to-date cash and in-kind pledge total to approximately $21,000, toward an estimated project cost of $300,000.
“We’re really grateful to have OTWB take on management of the community hall project,” said Aila Ikuse, president of the Fort Ward Youth Advisory Committee, which coordinates fundraising and outreach. “We hope this is the first of many in-kind contributions of services, material and labor to make our project a reality.”
Constructed in 1910 to serve troops stationed at the Coast Artillery Corps. installation at Fort Ward, the historic bakery building was converted into a power station for the fort during World War II and later to a private residence.
Community members hope to restore the building for classes, meetings and other civic functions. It would be the first neighborhood hall at the south end of the island, following the preservation of other historic Bainbridge buildings including Seabold Hall, Island Center Hall, and the Camp Yeomalt scout cabin for neighborhood use.
The Fort Ward Community Hall project is a joint undertaking of the Fort Ward neighborhood, Kitsap County Sewer District No. 7, the Bainbridge Island Metro Park & Recreation District.