YMCA waits on money for second phase of Ocean Springs renovation - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

YMCA awaits money for second phase of Ocean Springs renovations

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

The YMCA's plan for a major overhaul of its 35-year-old facility on Government Street in Ocean Springs is in a wait and see mode. Some initial renovation work was completed months ago. Now the Y would like to move forward with phase two. That can't happen until renovation money can be raised.

The YMCA is proud its indoor pool is where thousands of children have learned to swim. However, the condition of the pool and adjoining rooms is not something Y leaders are happy about.

"We need to really upgrade it," said YMCA spokesperson Caterina Johnson. "The locker rooms need changing. The decking around the pool definitely needs to be changed. The roof."

The Building Strength Campaign would take the Government Street facility to a whole new level. Not only would the existing buildings be renovated, but the Y would construct a new 8,700 square foot building. First the Y must raise $2.5 million.

"We've got the support of community leaders who are committed to this project," said Board Member Randall Doyle. "We've got the right purpose. YMCA promoting Christian values and helping the body, mind and spirit of the community. Without the money frankly none of it happens."

With 3,000 members at the Ocean Springs YMCA, officials said it's time to plan for the future.

"Especially in light of how much the Gulf Coast has grown, especially over the past 15 years," Board Member Roland Weeks said. "If we don't grow with it, if we don't provide the kind of services the Y provides, the community is not going to develop the way it should."

"This is right for the community," Doyle said. "This is something that is going to enable the YMCA to serve the community in a better way and it's going to be here for the next generation. So when the young people come to the Y seeking a place to come swim or for daycare, it's going to be a facility that is going to serve them well."

To donate go to http://www.msgulfcoast-ymca.org/ or you can drop off a donation at the YMCA office on Government Street in Ocean Springs.

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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