New YMCA planned for Hamburg area; North Lexington Y to expand

ctruman@herald-leader.comMay 13, 2014 

  • YMCA of Central Kentucky milestones

    ■ Established in 1853 at the First Presbyterian Church on Broadway and Second Street

    ■ First YMCA building in Lexington was erected in 1904 at Market and Church Streets

    ■ In 1950, the YMCA relocates to its present location at 239 East High Street

    ■ In 1997, a $12.8 million capital campaign launched to build two new YMCAs — the North Lexington Y and the Beaumont Y — and renovate High Street location

    ■ In 1999, the High Street Y Fitness Center was newly renovated and construction began on the two new Y locations

    ■ In 2000, the North Lexington Family Y and Beaumont Centre Family Y opened

    Source: YMCA of Central Kentucky

The YMCA of Central Kentucky is expanding its North Lexington facility and building a new Y in the booming Hamburg corridor, officials will announce at a Tuesday morning press conference.

The $3 million expansion at the North Lexington Family YMCA is being spurred by a $1.5 million matching gift from Lexmark, which donated the land at 381 West Loudon Avenue for the North Lexington Y which opened in 2000.

The Hamburg facility will include a warm water pool and play area, multiuse lap pool, health and wellness center, exercise studios, youth arcade and child care, gymnasium, indoor track and locker rooms.

The North Lexington expansion will include an addition of 3,500 square feet of fitness and wellness space — doubling the space of the branch — and added space for healthy living programs such as Black Achievers, diabetes prevention, senior exercise and Livestrong for cancer survivors.

The expansion also will allow for separate locker rooms for adults and for adults with children. Also, the building's design will get a face lift, with added glass and windows to better use natural light.

"For us, it's about the exciting things that are happening in the north side corridor," said David Martorano, president and chief executive officer of the YMCA of Central Kentucky, citing the new Bluegrass Community & Technical College building nearby on Newtown Pike as an example.

Jeri Isbell, Lexmark's vice president of human resources, said the $1.5 million matching gift was the latest way Lexmark had shown its commitment to north Lexington. The IBM campus that later became Lexmark dates, in part, from 1956 when ground was broken for an IBM typewriter factory.

"We want to see the upgrades happen," Isbell said. "We want to be able to see it through. ... We bring customers and employees, and we want to show them how vibrant Lexington is."

The Hamburg YMCA will be off Sir Barton Way at Old Rosebud Lane and Pascoli Place abutting the Tuscany neighborhood. It will be visible from Sir Barton Way, Hamburg's thoroughfare, and close to the new public high school planned for Winchester Road and scheduled to open in 2017.

The YMCA had planned to build in Hamburg as early as 2003 but suspended those plans because of the economic crisis that began in 2008. Developer Tim Haymaker donated the 10-acre parcel in 2003.

Haymaker also donated land for the Beaumont branch of the YMCA, now the YMCA's busiest branch.

The final cost for the new branch has not been tallied, Martorano said, because construction is out for bid.

When Hamburg would get a YMCA has been a frequent question since Martorano arrived in Lexington from Cincinnati in 2013, he said.

"The community keeps asking us," he said. "This is based on a need."

Fundraising for the Hamburg location is underway, he said. Scheduled to open in 2016, it will offer after-school activities, camps and healthy living activities, and will "certainly be a great amenity," Martorano said.

The North Lexington YMCA update will be finished by 2015, Martorano said, and the building will remain open throughout construction.

Currently, the YMCA of Central Kentucky operates three facilities in Lexington — High Street, North Lexington and Beaumont — and program offices in Jessamine and Scott counties.

A capital campaign for a new YMCA branch in Nicholasville was put on hold in 2011 after failing to raise enough money.

Cheryl Truman: (859) 231-3202. Twitter: @CherylTruman.

Lexington Herald-Leader is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service