Under construction for almost nine months now, the new recplex in Carondelet Park is finely taking shape. If you’re not familiar with the project, its located on the southern edge of Carondelet Park, just off of Highway 55 and Loughborough. This $20 million, 75,000 sq ft complex is set to be open sometime in the summer of 2009. This project began in November 2006 when St. Louis voters approved a 1/8 cent sales tax to pay for this and other projects. The construction of the project is being run by KCI Construction, which is a local St. Louis company. When finished, the building will qualify for Silver LEED Certification and spotlight the following features:
- Double gymnasium
- Locker rooms
- Meeting spaces
- Ares for seniors and teens
- Babysitting service
- Aerobics training facility
- Weight training facility
- Elevated indoor running track
- Indoor pool
- Outdoor pool (scaled back from 12 ft deep to 5 ft deep due to cost restraints)
- Lazy river
- Aquatic play structures and slides
The completed project will be owned by the City of St. Louis. Day to day operations, on the other hand, will be a different matter. I a rather surprising arrangement, the YMCA of St. Louis has been contracted to handle the operations of the facility. The YMCA currently operates a facility nearby, at 600 Loughborough in the Carondelet Neighborhood. All details are not yet finalized, but as part of the agreement, the YMCA would move its fitness classes and gym to the new facility to open space for other activieies in their existing location. This kind of arrangement is not unknown in other parts of the country, but it is a first for the St. Louis area.
One of th biggest lingering questions is how much membership will cost. Recent estimates place dues near the current YMCA memebership rates of $48 for an adult and $69 for a family. Residents would likely get a discounted rate over nonresidents. Obviously they are tailoring the operations of the facility towards a family friendly focus by adopting this pricing structure.
With this new facility, along with recent improvements to Carondelet Park itself and Loughborough commons, the far south-side of St. Louis City is looking like an increasingly attractive area for investment opportunities. The surrounding neighborhoods of Holly Hills, Boulevard Heights and Carondelet will likely see continued improvement with the influx of residents and activity caused by these improvements. Keep this area on your radar.
Check the image gallery below to see concept art and construction phots for the project. Check out this Suburban Journal article for more details.