A project to expand a Binghamton community center is about to be completed after it was held up when construction costs ran over budget.

A plaque in memory of Binghamton Patrolman Lee Barta is placed in front of the community center. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

When plans for the Lee Barta Community Center at 108 Liberty Street were announced in November 2016, Mayor Richard David said the large facility was expected to open the following fall.

But groundbreaking for the expansion work didn't take place until October. David said the delay occurred because bids for what was billed as a $450,000 project exceeded the budget. The actual total cost of the job hasn't been announced.

Activities and programs that had been held at the North Side facility were shifted to other sites, including a temporary storefront at the Binghamton Plaza.

When a reporter recently visited the newly-constructed section of the community center, it appeared most of the interior work had been completed. But the reporter was advised that no pictures could be taken inside the new facility because of an order issued by City Hall. The mayor's office confirmed that no photos were allowed.

A ceremony marking the opening of the expanded center is expected to be held within the next few weeks.

The rear side of the expanded Lee Barta Community Center on Liberty Street. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com

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