Three downtown buildings are set to be razed to make way for a local nonprofit’s $20 million expansion.
The Downtown YMCA on Monday plans to tear down three Grace Street properties the organization bought in 2008. After the demolition is complete, the Downtown Y will begin work on an addition to its 98,000-square-foot building at 2 W. Franklin St.
There’s no word yet on when the expansion will be complete, said executive director Tricia Hutnan.
“It depends on our fundraising efforts, which have really just begun for this project,” Hutnan said.
Funding for the expansion will come from the organization’s Growing Stronger Together capital campaign. Hutnan said that volunteers have started raising money but that they’re going to kick the campaign into high gear early next year.
The expansion will eventually sit on 1, 3, 5 and 7 W. Grace St. The properties set for demolition include a long-shuttered auto upholstery shop and an old drug store.
The added space will let the Downtown Y expand its community development programs for teens, senior and parents and will double the capacity of the preschool to just over 100 students.
“That was one of the key drivers of the expansion,” Hutnan said.
The nonprofit will also overhaul the building’s swimming pool, turning it into a family-style aquatic center that Hutnan said would be more conducive to giving lessons.
Three other Central Virginia YMCA branches – Northside, Manchester and Petersburg – also have plans to expand, Hutnan said. Of the four, she said the downtown expansion would be the largest.
Moseley Architects designed the addition to the building. Hutnan said the organization hasn’t selected a general contractor.
The Downtown Y is part of the YMCA of Greater Richmond. The organization has 18 branches and more than 2,000 employees in the area.
The YMCA of Greater Richmond has seen several large construction projects over the past few years. In mid-2011, it began construction on a YMCA at the Rutland development in Mechanicsville.