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Y of Central Maryland to expand Carroll County facility, sell another

The Y of Central Maryland is expanding a Carroll County facility to meet growing demand and is trying to sell another.

By the end of the year, the 24,000-square-foot health center at 1719 Sykesville Rd. in Westminster will expand by another 5,000 square feet.

To begin this summer, the expansion will likely include more family locker rooms, a larger children's play area and fitness center, the Y's Chief Marketing Officer Sara Milstein says. The Westminster Y will also add several multi-purpose rooms that can be used for group exercise classes, meetings and clubs.

"The renovation is very intentionally designed to encourage family and community interaction," Milstein says. Y officials envision their centers as being a place where people can interact with their neighbors and friends.
"In a hurried society where families are under so much stress, the old-fashioned town square doesn't exist anymore," Milstein says. "There's a recognition for a real need for people to connect and not just virtually. We're making the membership about more than fitness but about the spirit, mind and body."

Y officials plan to fund the expansion by using the proceeds from the sales of the building to the Powers Cos. The Y will then lease back the property from Powers for 25 years.

Milstein declined to say how much the Y is spending on the renovations and the building sale. The property is valued at about $2.7 million, according to state property records.

Organization leaders are also actively seeking a buyer for the Westminster Inn, which the Y purchased from the Maryland School for the Blind in 2007. Costs for renovating the historic building have been escalating and given the economic downturn, Y leaders decided it would be wise to sell it rather than spending more money on it, Milstein says.

When the renovation is completed, the Westminster Y will be renamed the Hill Family Center Y in recognition of longtime donors.
The Y of Central Maryland currently operates 11 centers in Baltimore City and Baltimore, Howard, Harford, Carroll and Howard counties.

Writer: Julekha Dash
Source, Sara Milstein, Y of Central Maryland
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