PARKING ISSUES DOMINATE YMCA HEARING

hot-topic1Parking and traffic were topics A and B as a plan to bulk up the Community YMCA facility in Red Bank went before the borough zoning board last night, according to today’s Asbury Park Press.

Y officials want to add 40,000 square feet of space to the Maple Avenue facility, which had board members wondering about the adequacy of parking, the Press reports:

Board members and engineers debated with YMCA experts about how much parking would be needed to accommodate daily members and special events at the new building, and if 367 spaces the YMCA plans to provide will do the job.

“We don’t know what (the YMCA) will offer and what it will generate in participation. That’s the unknown,” Borough Engineer Richard Kosenski said.

The Y plans to add a family-friendly pool and indoor-outdoor sprinkler park; a six-lane lap pool; a modern gym with spectator space and a new indoor track; facilities for a fitness and wellness center; a spinning room; a Wii room; additional parking; a new lobby; and a seniors-only area, the Press says.

Y representatives defended the parking plan as sufficient.

Jeromie Lange, engineer and planner for the YMCA, said that 367 spaces are the maximum on the current site and that the Y has arrangements to use overflow parking at two nearby facilities. Original plans called for an increase in parking on the 5.9-acre YMCA site from 152 to 303 spaces, with an option to add another 64 spaces.

He analyzed the YMCA’s existing parking ratio to the building size and came up with a ratio of a little over two spaces per 1,000 square feet of building. Factoring in the addition and new parking, that ratio increases to 3.83 spaces per 1,000 square feet.

“We feel pretty good . . . the parking works,” he said. “The 367 spaces is wholly on site. It’s the highest number we could get.”