East Suburban YMCA looking to raise final $275K for expansion project

| Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

The East Suburban YMCA is pushing for donations by the end of the year for its expansion and renovation project.

The YMCA is about $275,000 short of its goal of raising half of the $12 million cost of the project, Executive Director Kelli McIntyre said. The expansion is set to nearly double the size of the 20,000-square-foot facility.

“We need the community to come together,” McIntyre said.

The Sampson Foundation until Dec. 31 is providing matching grants for the project. The foundation kicked off the fundraising for the project a couple of years ago with a $1 million donation.

“For donations up to $999, they (the foundation) are matching one to one,” McIntyre said. “For donations of $1,000 and up, they are matching two to one.”

The facility is to be renamed the Sampson Family YMCA, after Myles D. Sampson, a real estate developer known for his community support and philanthropic endeavors. Sampson, of Murrysville, died in March 2007 at the age of 62.

Pledge forms are available to the public at the YMCA on Route 286 in Plum or online by accessing the East Suburban Family YMCA website.

Features of the project are a 30,000-square-foot addition with a wellness center; a teaching kitchen; an indoor aquatic center, including a warm-water therapy pool; a new and expanded child-care area and summer day camp; a new community room; locker rooms; a preventive health class and rehabilitation-program area; and a teen programming area.

McIntyre said construction is under way, with the footers installed and brick on the building that is expected to be completed in July.

Traffic improvements also are near completion.

“The traffic lights are up and will have left turn signals for going in and out,” McIntyre said. “They should be operational by Christmas.”

McIntyre said once the new building is complete, renovations are expected to begin on the existing building.

The gymnasium will undergo a “facelift,” McIntyre said, with the installation of a new floor. The gym also will be painted with “lively colors,” McIntyre said.

Also, the current preschool room will be converted into a space for stationary cycling bikes. And the current locker room area will be turned into a small group exercise room, McIntyre said.

McIntyre's focus continues to be keeping the YMCA programs in place during the construction. The YMCA last weekend was one of the stops during the annual Sugar Plum Days event.

Karen Zapf is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8753, or kzapf@tribweb.com.

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