NEWTON, KANSAS — The Newton Health & Wellness Initiative Group announced today the project site for the potential construction of a regional YMCA to serve the growing preventive health care needs of kids and adults in Newton and surrounding communities.
The twelve-acre site is to be donated by the Newton Medical Center and is in the southeast portion of the hospital’s campus located at the I-135 and U.S. Highway 50 interchange.
“This isn’t just exciting for Newton, it’s good news for a lot of other area communities,” commented Newton Health & Wellness Initiative Group coordinator Virgil Penner. “Our group has been focused on bringing new health and recreation opportunities to the area for five years, and a regional Y would help a lot of families live healthier lives.”
The proposed $15 million facility would serve an estimated 20,000 people in the region. Construction may begin as early as the second quarter of 2013, but is contingent on the community raising $5 million in private funds toward the project cost.
“It’s an honor to help make this possible for local families,” stated Newton Medical Center President and CEO Steve Kelly. “We’re committed to the health of our community, and helping bring new opportunities for people to combat obesity, cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes with a healthy exercise regimen and recreational activities is good for everyone.”
The Newton YMCA would be part of the Greater Wichita YMCA Association and would bring an anticipated 100 full and part-time jobs to the area.
“It’s great to be invited to communities like Newton. The Wellness Initiative Group and a lot of the local business leaders are looking out for the future health of area families. They saw a need, and we’re happy we have the chance be a part of their solution,” said Greater Wichita YMCA General Executive Dennis Schoenebeck.
The proposed 55,000-65,000 square foot Newton YMCA would complement current Newton recreational offerings. The two-story YMCA facility would include a variety of wellness centers for strength and cardiovascular fitness, an elevated indoor track, two gymnasiums, an aquatics center with a zero-entry warm water family pool, a multi-lane lap pool, whirlpool, sauna and steam room, two racquetball courts, multiple program studios, three locker rooms and numerous social spaces.
The Newton Health & Wellness Initiative Group will continue its efforts to expand health and wellness opportunities in the area as it makes plans to assist in helping the community raise the necessary private funds to ensure the construction of the Newton YMCA.
About Us and Our Project Partners:
The Newton Health & Wellness Initiative Group is a private effort to advance the community by improving the health and well-being of area residents. The group, comprised of more than 30 local citizens and business leaders, has been meeting for more than five years to help answer the question of how to expand health and wellness opportunities in the Newton area.
Newton Medical Center is a comprehensive 103-bed hospital in Newton, Kan., offering full-service medical care in Harvey, Butler and northern Sedgwick counties. For more information about Newton Medical Center, please call 316-283-2700 or visit www.newtonmedicalcenter.com.
The Greater Wichita YMCA is a non-profit organization that serves more than 265,000 kids and adults through child care, camping, urban outreach programs and healthy lifestyles activities. Nearly two out of three kids in Sedgwick and Butler Counties participate in YMCA activities and more than 67,000 participants receive free and assisted programs. Within the YMCA’s financial capabilities, no person is refused program or membership privileges because of inability to pay.