Mayor, YMCA announce plans to keep offices downtown

Photo Credit: Adam Herman

PHOTO: Mayor Healy (center) announces YMCA will remain in Canton with local developer Max Deuble (left) and Edwin Lair (right), Chairman of the YMCA Board of Trustees.
By Adam Herman
Released/Published: Jun 25, 2008

Temporary location will be used while current building is renovated

CANTON, Ohio - In a joint press conference held this Wednesday, Mayor William J. Healy II and the YMCA of Central Stark County announced that the organization's board of trustees has reconsidered their decision to move their downtown headquarters outside the city of Canton, and instead will establish temporary offices on 30th Street N.W. until their former location is renovated.  The entire process, which is expected to take roughly three years to complete, will begin as early as August of this year.

“I am thrilled that the YMCA has decided to stay in Canton,” Healy said.  “We are working hard to make the city of Canton thrive, and keeping the YMCA as part of our downtown landscape will help to ensure that this happens.”

YMCA board members had recently voted to move the location of their headquarters to Jackson Township, a development that quickly caught the Mayor's attention.  Their decision was a surprise to Healy, who said he considered the YMCA a valuable and reliable asset to the city's downtown development efforts.

“There were a few key items that gave the board cause for concern,” Healy said.  “But we have now alleviated those concerns, and can continue to depend on the YMCA as a valuable partner in the revitalization of our city's future.”

The plan, which will retain roughly 30 jobs inside city limits, calls for the YMCA to establish temporary offices at 1201 30th Street N.W. while their downtown facility undergoes renovation.  Historic Developers LLC, a Louisville-based company that has completed other notable downtown building renovations, will purchase the building from the YMCA and turn a large portion of the building into market-rate housing.  The remainder of the space will be leased back to the organization for its corporate offices and new Downtown YMCA facility.

“This is just one step in the process of renovating this nearly 100-year old building,” said Ed Lair, YMCA Board Chair.  “When all is said and done, we're going to have a 21st century facility that will help to meet the needs of Canton area youth and families, as well as the needs of the downtown business community.  Everybody wins with this arrangement.”

The building, which will undergo a “green” construction process during renovations to make it more energy-efficient, is scheduled to be completed by December 2010.  Developers plan to use federal and state historic tax credits to subsidize a portion of the renovation, as the building will likely earn historic place status.

The corporate offices of the YMCA of Central Stark County manage nine area branches in Stark and Carroll counties.  YMCA Camp Tippecanoe, one of these nine branches, is located in Harrison County.  Over 75,000 people are served every year through membership services, various programs, and other YMCA events.

Contact Information: Adam Herman - (330) 438-4304 - adam.herman@cantonohio.gov

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