YMCA Turner Street Location Closes - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

YMCA Turner Street Location Closes

ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB News Channel 5) - The Turner Street location of the YMCA is now closed.

We're told a lack of financial support and memberships led to the closure.

The agency was also looking for donations from the Cenla business community to help keep its doors open.

The Turner Street branch had been open for 50 years.

Additionally,a loss of funding from the United Way at the end of last year has greatly affected the YMCA's operations in the Alexandria area.

The YMCA is now struggling to keep youth programs running at its facility on Sylvester Street.

The Y's Downtown Alexandria Gamburg Branch closed last November due to mounting operational costs.

Here's the press released issued by the YMCA regarding the closure:

Despite the best efforts of the Board of Directors,employees and volunteers, the YMCA of Central Louisiana has closed,indefinitely, its main Turner Street Branch, effective Saturday, March 29. However,the City Park Branch will remain open, for now, to continue its after-schoolprogram.

The decision comes after intense efforts by the board overthe last three months to restructure into a more viable business model for theAlexandria community and to secure donations. However, the board saw no otherchoice but to close the Turner Street facility after it could not securenecessary funds. The board will continue to seek donations to move forward withplans for the YMCA's summer camp at City Park.  

"We see this decision as the final call to action for theAlexandria community if it wants to save the YMCA's services at Turner Street,"said Sid McDaniel, chairman of the board. "As home to the only indoor publicpool in the community, Turner Street has been a tremendous asset, especiallyfor those who cannot exercise any other way."

Among the services the YMCA willno longer be able to offer through the Turner Street facility are swim lessons,adult water aerobics, fitness classes and adult volleyball and basketball.Unless a large donation effort is made, the Turner Street location will closeafter having served the Alexandria community since 1967. 

"As a board, we remain committed to the mission of the YMCAin Central Louisiana," McDaniel said. "If that means a scaled-down form thatfocuses on youth services for now, that is the direction in which we will go."

McDaniel said the YMCA's board of directors will considerwhat to do with its remaining assets from the Turner Street location, and thatany sale of such will first go toward satisfying any outstanding debts.  All remaining funds will be put back into theYMCA's youth programs.


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