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After stop, go planning, delays gone for YMCA

(ran PC edition of Pasco Times)

The New Tampa YMCA was originally slated to be finished by September, but has been pushed back to late 2000 at the earliest.

After a series of delays, the New Tampa YMCA is one step closer to being built, YMCA officials said.

Representatives from the YMCA and the city met with developer Warren Kinsler Monday to work out details of the deal, said Dave Hollowell, vice president for construction management for the YMCA.

"We're very optimistic," Hollowell said. He added that if everything works out, construction could begin within a few weeks.

Another piece of land on the Kinsler property already is zoned for a park. But YMCA officials wanted the facility closer to Bruce B. Downs and residential areas, and Kinsler agreed.

Kinsler wants the original park area to be rezoned as single-family homes, Hollowell said.

"We said, "Does anyone have any problems with this?' " Hollowell recounted after the meeting. "There really wasn't anyone with any major heartburn."

The land has not officially become YMCA property. Once that happens, Hollowell said the next steps are for the YMCA to file a notice of proposed change with the city, then apply for a clearing permit and a building permit.

The YMCA, which would be built on Compton Park Drive, would cost between $3.5- and $4.5-million, YMCA officials have said.

The facility would have a long-course swimming pool _ 50 meters by 25 yards. The length is for events that use Olympic measurement, the width for high school events. It also would have a weight room with exercise equipment, a gym and a teen center. It may have rooms for gymnastics and other activities.

The facility is expected to be completed in late 2000 or early 2001, said Bob Gilbertson, president and CEO of Tampa Metropolitan YMCA. Previously, it was scheduled to open by the end of 1999, and before that, by September.