They’re sweating it out cheek-by-jowl at the Community YMCA in Red Bank these days.
A major interior renovation project that began earlier this month forced the temporary displacement of dozens of workout machines to unfamiliar places in the 40-year-old Maple Avenue facility. Stationary bikes are now crammed into two corners of a walking-and-running track, while Cybex resistance machines, their digital displays dark, share space with an already crowded free-weights room in the basement. Large portions of the main level and second floor are off-limits construction zones.
The disruptions are expected to be short-lived, as contractor Charles Hembling & Sons of Shrewsbury works two shifts, eyeing a completion goal of late May.
But in the interim, with the Y’s 8,000 members continuing to use the facility, it’s a little like changing the oil on a moving car, says Y president and CEO Lisa Christian.
The grumbling by members “hasn’t been too bad,” says Christian. “It’s more a question of, ‘where’s my machine?'”
Among the changes underway:
A makeover of the reception area to create more of a hotel-lobby atmosphere, with a wi-fi fed lounge.
A doubling in size of the childcare room, to 1,200 square feet, to create distinct zones for activities designed for infants, toddlers and pre-schoolers.
Boosting the size of the second-floor wellness center by 1,000 SF, to 3,400 SF, as all Cybex machines and free weights are brought together on the second floor. “Everything for your individual workout will be on one floor,” says Christian. “You won’t have to go floor-to-floor.”
The creation of a “health seeker” facility in what’s now a room lined with treadmills and elliptical trainers for patrons seeking “quieter, more personal workouts, people who aren’t die-hard fitness types,” says Christian. “That’s 80 percent of the world.”
The transformation of the basement free weights room into studios for all group workouts, including yoga.
Complete overhauls of the locker rooms, steam rooms and saunas.
Then, in the doldrums of August, the swimming pool will be closed for about a month as the heating and air-conditioning system gets its first overhaul in 40 years.
Funding for the work, budgeted at $1.5 million, is to come from the $2.5 million raised so far as part of a capital campaign launched in 2007 for a complete overhaul of the building, says Christian.
The renovations are also a prelude to a costlier expansion plan that last May led the Y into a lawsuit since settled against. That plan call for the eventual addition of two swimming pools and a facade makeover that will cost $10 million to $12 million.
One aim of the current work, says Christian, is “to ignite interest in the future expansion.”