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PRINCE FREDERICK, MD-The Calvert County Board of County Commissioners and the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington have established a public-private partnership to facilitate the development of a new YMCA family center. “Costs and size are premature right now,” the YMCA’s Karen Addis tells “Over the next few weeks we’ll assess the situation and that will give us a more in-depth idea of what the community needs.” The two organizations plan to hash out the details and solidify an agreement specifying responsibilities within the next six weeks. If the capital campaign to raise funds to build the facility goes as expected, construction will begin within the next two years.

An indoor swimming facility, childcare services, space for kid-focused community programs and a commuter parking facility will highlight the new family center. The development will sit on a spot of land known as the Old Fairgrounds Property on Fairgrounds Road. County commissioners acquired the 12-acre parcel from the Fair Board last year in a $552,000 transaction. The move was in response to area citizens’ request for a community swimming pool. Last year, commissioners said they would consider opening up the remaining land for possible office development or recreational purposes. The Maryland Transit Authority will lease the space for the commuter parking lot.

Addis noted that YMCA facilities vary quite widely in size, depending on the property size and community needs. Recently developed YMCA facilities of a similar description as the planned Calvert facility demonstrate the broad range in square footage. Examples include the new 21,000-sf YMCA in Town ‘N Country, FL, the 55,000-sf, Alexander W. Spears III Family YMCA in Greensboro, NC, and the 83,000-sf R. Ryall YMCA in Glen Ellyn, IL. And then there is the 80,000-sf facility recently proposed for the Tacoma-Pierce County area of Washington State, which will cost an estimated $12 to $14 million.

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