The city plans to install touchless faucets at its facilities, including popular sites such as the Fraze Pavilion and the Kettering Recreation Complex.
Kettering expects to spend at least $200,000 to replace about 200 faucets at some 20-plus locations starting this spring, Assistant City Manager Steve Bergstresser said.
The work will be financed initially with city funds. But Kettering officials expect to ultimately pay for the project — a response to COVID-19 — with money received by the American Rescue Plan Act, records show.
Touchless faucets are “something that other communities have looked at doing or have done with regard to making our facilities more hygienic, safer for folks to use,” Bergstresser said.
“There’s also a maintenance aspect that comes with it where potentially your day-to-day maintenance and custodial care can be enhanced by having touchless faucets…and we just feel the timing is right to do the same thing,” he added.
Touchless fixtures were approved last year by Huber Heights for The Rose Music Center. Huber approved about $50,000 on automatic flushers and sinks for the bathrooms as part of a public health move in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kettering’s move was also in response to the coronavirus, according to measure approved Tuesday night by Kettering City Council.
Council also approved a transfer of $200,000 to the city’s capital improvement fund, but Bergstresser said that amount is “a conservative estimate.”
Additional plumbing will be needed in some instances “because plumbing in some situations is not set up for touchless operations…it’s going to be more expensive than your standard bathroom faucet at your house,” Bergstresser added.
Installation is expected to start in May or June “with all of our high-touch facilities,” he said. That includes the Fraze, the KRC, the fitness and wellness center at Trent Arena and the government center complex, among them.
“It should address most — but not all — of our faucet locations, Bergstresser said, noting that it may not include sites at park shelters.
The work may take up to six months, he said.