On Tuesday, Feb. 16, the City of Clovis hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the Landmark Square Project on 3rd Street and Veterans Parkway in Old Town Clovis.
The groundbreaking ceremony was not open to the public. However, the City of Clovis livestreamed the event on Facebook.
The new Landmark Square will consist of a new senior center, transit center, and public library.
Clovis Mayor Drew Bessinger welcomed everybody and talked about the importance of the new facilities.
“These facilities will help serve our citizens in immeasurable ways,” said Bessinger. “This is a good day for us, it’s been a longtime coming.”
Councilmember Vong Mouanoutoua also spoke of how this facility will impact the senior community in Clovis.
“I just want to say to the seniors…we are giving you something brand new, we are going to make sure you are charged up when you come here. We are going to hold your hands, we are going to play games with you, we are going to listen to you because you are that important to us,” said Mouanoutoua.
The new senior center will be named “Clovis Senior Activity Center: A Smittcamp Family Legacy.”
The Smittcamp family was in attendance. Bill Smittcamp spoke about their family’s long history of service to the community. The Smittcamps have donated $1 million dollars to the Landmark Square project.
“This is what we’ve grown to become, to give back to the community,” said Smittcamp, “It is a great privilege for our family and foundation to be able to give this gift to help the City of Clovis go over the line and continue to serve our community.”
The “William H. ‘Harry’ Armstrong Transit Center’’ will be built alongside the senior center. The center is named after the late Harry Armstrong, who served on the Clovis City Council for 46 years.
Tom Armstrong, son of Harry Armstrong, thanked the City of Clovis and the councilmembers.
“One of the reasons why we have chosen to invest in the senior center is because the seniors of today have invested in us. They invested in us really when the City of Clovis decided to become a community that was known for their education,” said Tom Armstrong.
The project will also include a new 30,000 square foot public library. It will be the largest library in Fresno County.
Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig talked about the new library. He stated the City of Clovis’ support for the library tax is what helped bring the new library to Clovis.
“We stand here today, at a groundbreaking where, truly, Clovis is going to get a state-of-the-art library facility, a transit facility, and a senior facility — which is overdue,” said Magsig.
The Landmark Square Project will be completed in phases. The new Clovis Senior Activity Center is expected to be completed by the summer of 2022.