On Jan. 2, the Park Cities YMCA took its first physical step towards its planned $28 million renovation.
The neighborhood Y opened the doors to its interim location in Preston Center, at 6030 Luther Lane across from Black-Eyed Pea.
The temporary YMCA location is 15,000 square feet and includes locker rooms, meeting space, a children’s area, group exercise rooms, and a 3,500-square-foot fitness area.
Classes will continue as usual but the Preston Center location does not feature all of the amenities of the current location.
“There is not a pool at this location but all members are being given access to any YMCA in the city of Dallas at no extra charge,” said Roger Moon, executive director of the Park Cities YMCA. “Within a 5-6 mile radius, there are three indoor pools they can utilize.”
Don’t expect to work out at the original location over the holidays, as it will close while the Y moves equipment and personnel to the interim location.
During the gap between the current location’s closure and the Jan. 2 opening of the temporary location, members will be able to use their new all-access membership to all 10 Dallas-area YMCAs.
Members can expect class times to also be adjusted once the Y changes its location and evaluates the need and parking situation at their new spot adjacent to Hopdoddy Burger Bar, according to Moon.
“We may offer more popular classes at a time when parking will be the most convenient for our members,” Moon said.
Moon said the Y plans to start demolition around April 1 to replace the current 60-year-old facility near Preston Road and Mockingbird Lane.
The renovated larger complex, named the Moody Family YMCA at the Park Cities after an $8 million donation from the Moody Foundation, will be 58,000 square feet, with an underground parking garage.
Additional amenities at the renovated YMCA include more exercise space, classrooms, locker rooms, and an indoor therapy pool.
The renovation has been discussed since early 2012. Public hearings and University Park City Council discussions worked through concerns about parking and congestion, while the YMCA worked to get the most out of its space.
“The YMCA has a definite impact on how many people come through the area. It’s much more than in a traditional residential area,” said Jacob Speer, University Park director of community development. “But it also has an impact with its amenities, it’s a place to work out, swim, play soccer, and practice for football games. It’s an active building and site that has a lot of good programing.”
Neighbors in the area, the UP Planning and Zoning Commission, the City Council, and the YMCA all worked together to find common ground.
“Our biggest challenge was coming to an agreement of our needs programmatically and with space and what the city was willing to give up. I think we came to a pretty great compromise,” Moon said.
Once the YMCA files for its initial building permits, the city plans to host a neighborhood meeting to inform residents of the foreseeable effects of the 12-to-14 month construction, according to Speer.
Fundraising for the project is also ongoing.
As of now, the Y has raised $16.5 million, just over half of the facility’s price tag.
“We don’t want anyone to think that we’ve stopped,” said Moon. “We will continue fundraising and identifying possible sources of charitable donations even after we’ve moved into the new facility until we reach our goal of $28 million.”
Moon said the new Moody Family YMCA is expected to be complete by the beginning of the 2016-17 school year.