New YMCA to be built in Surrey’s City Centre neighbourhood

Planned facility to be 60,000 square feet, have two pools, a fitness centre, gym, multipurpose rooms and a family development centre.

The City of Surrey and YMCA have signed a partnership agreement to build a second facility in the City Centre neighbourhood.

CITY CENRE — A second Surrey YMCA is set to be built in City Centre.

After several years of discussions, the City of Surrey and YMCA made it official during a council meeting Monday night.

City staff will now work with the YMCA to help find a site and design the facility. It’s expected to open in 2020 or 2021.

“The new YMCA will be an important tool in response to the growing needs of a community in transition,” said David Gaskin, YMCA board member and chief financial officer for Coast Capital Savings, at city council Monday.

“City Centre is evolving as a dynamic regional centre which, over the next decade, will experience remarkable transformations,” Gaskin added.

“This is exactly the right place and the right time for a YMCA centre of community.”

Gaskin, a Surrey resident, told city council he’s “inspired by the potential of this partnership.”

It is expected the facility will be 60,000 square feet, have an aquatics centre with two pools, a fitness centre, a gym, multipurpose rooms and a family development centre.

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Mayor Linda Hepner said a new YMCA in City Centre is “an important second step.”

“The city has been a very, very strong supporter of the work the YMCA does in helping us create the kind of communities that we’re striving to,” she said to Gaskin. “I’m excited about it and equally as enthused as you are.”

The City of Surrey and the YMCA will each be putting up $20 million in capital contributions. The city’s portion was approved by council in its five year capital plan, slated for the 2019 budget. The YMCA plans to kick off a fundraising campaign once a site has been selected.

Under the current agreement, the YMCA would cover annual operating costs and the city wouldn’t be on the hook for any deficits.

The Tong Louie YMCA at 14988 57th Ave. was built in 2001 and today, more than 26,000 children, families, adults and seniors are served by the centre through 70 YMCA program sites city-wide.

The organization offers child care, youth leadership programs, support for new Canadians, camps and outdoor education. But YMCA’s first presence in Surrey was in Whalley in 1967 with a storefront program that supported youth employment training.

amy.reid@thenownewspaper.com

 

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