Lundy tells YMCA: come back to Clinton Street to build aquatics center

Published: Mar. 31, 2022 at 3:16 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 31, 2022 at 5:00 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - Watching the cost of the Watertown YMCA’s new aquatics center soar, developer Mike Lundy is telling the Y to come back to Clinton Street.

In 2019, the YMCA approached Lundy about turning the old Medical Arts Building into an aquatics center.

Plans were drawn up, but things changed after the YMCA realized the site wouldn’t qualify for some funding.

On Thursday, Lundy told 7 News the cost to build what the Y wanted back in 2019 was $14 million.

And even with today’s inflation, Lundy feels the same project now planned on Arsenal Street can be done on his property for under $20 million.

“If they had stayed with us, we would have had the thing built by now. I just don’t think the thing has been handled very well. If they could have built it over there for $16 million, great, I get it. But now to be 28, 30, who knows, $32 (million) when they are done, yeah, I think they should reconsider our property as well as others. But our property is ready to start immediately. We already have the design done,” said Lundy.

The Y’s project cost now is $27.5 million.

The head of the YMCA, Denise Young, told 7 News moving the project isn’t possible because grant funding, including a $9 million Department of Defense grant, is tied specifically to the Arsenal Street location.

How quickly could the project happen on Lundy’s site? Because plans have been drawn up, Lundy says he could have it in front of the planning board in 60 to 90 days, break ground this summer, and occupy it next year.

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