St. Catharines not moving forward with programming at former YMCA property

ymca st. catharines

The Mayor of St. Catharines says he stands by his decision to end talks over city programming at the former YMCA building.

The building, located at 25 YMCA Drive, is now owned by Atria Development, and the city has had some conversations about running programming out of the site, including using the pool.

Mayor Mat Siscoe says the city reviewed a proposal from Atria, and the costs of associated with programming at the facility would have amounted to more than $5.5 million a year.

Siscoe says that would have amounted to an almost 4.7% property tax increase by itself, and it doesn't include any kind of repairs to the 30-year-old facility.

"Additionally – the facility would not have met the City’s Accessibility Design requirements, and significant additional costs would have been incurred to bring the facility up to the standards required today. This would include but is not limited to altering the multi-floor changeroom facilities, building out family and universal changerooms and making the actual pool area accessible to persons with disabilities and older adults."

He says while it is frustrating that they can't get a deal done, there are too many significant financial risks associated with moving forward.

"As Mayor, I stand behind my decision to not continue further with this process, and I am pleased that an overwhelming majority of Council made the same decision."