HARKER HEIGHTS - The city is gearing up for a new YMCA gym in Purser Family Park. The Armed Services YMCA (ASYMCA) is expected to serve more than 15,000 veterans and civilians.
The new ASYMCA will have more than simple workout equipment. It will also offer post-outpatient soldier rehabilitation programs, military family counseling, family meet-ups, holistic wellness programs and nutrition classes.
Seton Medical Center Harker Heights CEO Matt Maxfield presented ASYMCA with a $2 million check for the construction of the two-story 45,000-sf workout and rehabilitation facility.
The project has raised half of its $9.3 million development goal. ASYMCA board chairman Larry Linder said that when the 80 percent goal is reached, construction will begin.
Board member Donna Connell said an agreement with Seton called for breaking ground within the next one-and-a-half years, but the project overview stated that building could start by December. The facility will take about a year to finish.
Along with offering soldier rehabilitation programs for lost limbs, severe burns, heart issues and other war injuries, the center will have a $1.5 million warm water therapy pool with a treadmill on the bottom, Davis said.
ASYMCA started in 1966 in Killeen to provide programs and support for soldiers and their families. The organization offers before- and after-school programs at 39 schools from Lampasas to Belton. Family-oriented YMCA facilities in Copperas Cove and Heights will stay open after the new facility is built.
The idea for the new complex crystallized in 2009, when the city gave the parkland to ASYMCA, said Tony Mino, executive director of ASYMCA Killeen.
While the ASYMCA hasn’t gotten a building permit, Linder said he is optimistic that partnering with the city will help the project move forward.