"Right now the job isn't being done for the young teenage population," he said.
The YMCA on East McKinley Street is surrounded by the reserve center, residential homes and property owned by Chambersburg Area School District, including the former J. Schoeneman Inc. building and the high school.
In 1956, the YMCA building was donated to the organization and cannot be sold because of deed restrictions, Matthews said.
Moving would also defeat the purpose of providing more youth programs, since it's centrally located near the high school and middle school, he said.
Nearly 70 elementary students are already bused to the YMCA every day for after-school programs, he said.
"What's most important is we're trying to service all of the kids in this community. The Y is uniquely located for that," Matthews said.
Several expansions, renovations and improvements to the building inside and out have been done over the years to accommodate its 3,100 members, he said.
But more room is needed to meet future goals, including opening a teen center wired for computers, a child care center, a playground, beach volleyball court, multi-purpose sports field and a larger parking lot, Matthews said.
At a Dec. 8 meeting, the Letterkenny Industrial Development Authority, a citizens' group managing the development of 1,500 acres of land at Letterkenny Army Depot that's being transferred to Franklin County, verbally supported the YMCA's idea of moving the reserve center there.
But Cannon said moving a reserve center is not that easy because the site would have to go through years of environmental, historical and archaeological studies, among others.
"The restrictions the government puts on municipalities and businesses is much, much less than what they put on themselves," he said.
Even then, the YMCA would have no guarantee of getting the property, since the federal Department of Defense and other federal agencies, including Housing and Urban Development and the state of Pennsylvania, would have first rights to the land, Cannon said.
"Some things we just can't do. Moving would be too cumbersome, time-consuming and expensive," Cannon said.