School Closings And Delays

YMCA Announces Plans for New Facility

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The YMCA in Williamsport has been at its current location since the 1920s.

It looks like the "Y" will be on the move, and announced plans this week to build a new facility.

The YMCA in Williamsport covers half a city block and is too big and too old, according to officials who plan to build a new "Y" to replace it.

Bill English is a personal trainer at the YMCA and looks forward to having a new place to work out and help people get in shape.

"It's a great idea. We needed it, expand weight rooms, cardio rooms, child care, all way around, better for community," said English.

River Valley Regional YMCA CEO Dave Fagerstrom said the current building presents a challenge when it comes to energy efficiency since it has been added on to each decade since the 1920s.

"We're heating and cooling and cleaning a lot of space we just can't use," explained Fagerstrom.

He said by building the new $10 million facility several blocks away, the YMCA will be able to save more than $100,000 a year on utilities and cleaning alone.

The hope is to attract more members.

"I think it would bring new members in, if it's a nicer newer gym, would attract a lot more people," said Joanna Lovell of Williamsport.

Not only that, but employees in the YMCA's Child Care center look forward to what they call a welcome improvement.

"It'll be really nice, so much more space, we have to share play space with eating space. More room to move around," said Janice Hayes.

The new YMCA will be built in Williamsport, right across from Williamsport Regional Medical Center. YMCA officials expect to have groundbreaking by September of this year, and have the new YMCA open within a year after that.

The sale of the current building is expected to defray the cost of the new facility and the YMCA is asking for at least $5 million in donations to make the new place a reality.