The YMCA of Marquette County keeps making headlines for all the right reasons.
Only a few weeks after announcing a $2.99 million expansion of the Marquette YMCA facility, Y leadership announced this morning that the organization would be relocating and overhauling the west end facility, as well.
By year's end, the west end YMCA will relocate, moving down Iron Street from the Negaunee Center to the current Range Bank building.
This $800,000 deal is great news for the community. The YMCA will be repurposing a beautiful downtown building - it will be vacated when Range shifts its operations to Negaunee's highway office and to the new branch opening along Marquette's Front Street - and will be improving services for those on the west end.
Lisa Coombs-Gerou, the CEO of the YMCA of Marquette County, said the current facility lacks showers and locker rooms, amenities badly desired by the facility's roughly 1,200 members. Most of those members come from the Ishpeming, Negaunee and Republic areas.
In addition to doubling the size of the west end facility and creating a state-of-the-art Y - complete with a wellness center and separate rooms dedicated to child care, youth activities, aerobics and bouldering - the organization should be pouring money back into the community.
After spending about $295,000 to purchase the building, the Y will undertake a $500,000 renovation project to match the facility with the needs of the membership.
Representatives from local engineering and architecture firm Integrated Designs Inc. have already been hard at work drafting plans for the current bank building.
The entire project is also being financed by Range, a local institution.
We are glad to see the the commitment to the community being demonstrated by the YMCA of Marquette County and congratulate the organization on yet another very positive move.