Mike Quast, Director of the Johnson County Family YMCA, spoke with both the city council and the county commission Tuesday to gain support from them to pursue a land ownership issue that needs to be resolved at the state level.
The “Y” building is owned by the City of Buffalo, and the facility is managed by the YMCA for the city. It has been inspected and the amount of money needed to restore the nearly 40 year-old building is approaching estimates to build a new, bigger facility with more amenities, he said.
The YMCA has secured KAH Architects to create the conceptual drawings for the new facility, but they now need lands on which to build it.
They have approached the school district, inquiring about the lands at George Grace Field, just west of the current facility, but ownership issues have surfaced that need to be investigated further. The school district is currently leasing the land from the state, but questions have arisen as to who actually owns the land.
Quast and the YMCA asked the council and commission to draft letters of support for them urging the state to investigate the land ownership and resolve it once and for all.
Once the ownership is determined, the YMCA will then have the architects draft a conceptual design for a possible new city and/or county-owned recreation center to replace the aging YMCA building.
Both the city and county have agreed to support the effort.