Officials broke ground Wednesday morning for a $1.5 million addition to the Hagerstown YMCA.
Gregory Snook, chairman of the board of the Hagerstown YMCA, said the 10,000-square-foot addition, which will be constructed at the rear of the existing building, will accommodate a membership that has grown about 27 percent since 2002.
"We've been very fortunate with the growth here as far as members coming," Snook said. "We're up to about 16,000 people coming in and out of the facility each year."
Mike Flicek, executive director of the Hagerstown YMCA, said other improvements include renovating 2,800 square feet of existing space to increase the size of the fitness room. In addition, the playroom will be enlarged to keep children occupied while their parents work out.
Flicek said the expansion probably would create more jobs.
"We're going to have to hire more people to handle the new programs," he said.
Snook said YMCA officials started planning for the project in 2003 and borrowed and raised most of the funding on their own. They also landed a $400,000 matching grant from the state.
He said construction should be completed by Nov. 1 if everything goes as planned. The only thing they're waiting for is a building permit from the city, which could take a few weeks.
Officials will hire as many contractors from the area as possible to help spur the local economy, Snook said. Callas Contractors Inc., for example, is the chief builder.
About 35 people attended the groundbreaking ceremony.