Home / News / Local / YMCA returns to downtown Kansas City

YMCA returns to downtown Kansas City

The “Y” is returning to downtown Kansas City, Missouri after 37 years.

The announcement was made Tuesday by the YMCA of Greater Kansas City. A construction kickoff event will be held Friday for the new facility, which will be located at the former Lyric Theatre building at 1029 Central St.

The $35 million project will incorporate the front facade and lobby of the historic theater at 1029 Central and include a 42,000 square-foot addition behind it, bringing to downtown a host of health-related services in partnership with Truman Medical Center.

Features of the Y will a family pool and lap pool, medical clinic, gymnasium and suspended indoor track, swimming lessons, healthy living classes and community events, the YMCA of Greater Kansas City said in a news release.

It’s expected to be completed in the spring 2021. The 11th Street Corridor Tax Increment Financing District will fund $16.9 million of the project, with additional funding to come from the Missouri Development Finance Board and charitable gifts.

The old downtown Y at 10th and Oak closed in 1981 after operating there since 1907. Sadly, that historic seven-story building was demolished in 1999 to make way for Ilus W. Davis Park.

“The new Y builds on the success of Kansas City’s downtown revitalization and will bring much-needed community programs to this diverse and growing community,” said David Byrd, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Kansas City. “This is a new chapter in history for our Y and for Kansas City as we transform the historic Lyric Theatre building into a community center that will benefit generations for years to come.”

The YMCA of Greater Kansas City will partner with Truman Medical Center to open a health clinic at the new facility. The two organizations also partnered to open a health clinic at the Linwood YMCA on Linwood Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri.

The new Y will be named the Kirk Family Community Center in honor of the Kirk family, which includes the late Phil Kirk, former chairman of DST Realty. Phil Kirk played a key role in bringing the new Y to the former Lyric Theatre, the YMCA of Greater Kansas City said.

“Bringing this Y and medical clinic to downtown is truly a game changer and an important milestone for the Kansas City community,” said CiCi Rojas, chief volunteer officer for the YMCA of Greater Kansas City. “We look forward to the completion of this project so that the Y may impact more lives for the better.”

–Metro Voice & wire services