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Westport Weston Family Y Withdraws Sewer Application

The application would have connected the new Y facility to the town sewer system.

The announced that it has at Mahackeno Outdoor Center to the Town’s municipal sanitary sewer system.

The Family Y had previously gained local and state approval to install and operate a septic system that would safely treat wastewater from the new Y facility on site. Citing environmental and economic benefits, in late January the Family Y filed an application with the town to connect its planned new Y to the Town’s municipal sanitary sewer system.

“We filed the application in response to input that we had received throughout the public approval process from many members of the community, including local officials, expressing a preference for a sewer connection rather than an on-site septic system,” said Rob Reeves, Family Y CEO.  

Since the application was filed, it has become apparent that the Family Y’s application has raised consideration of issues broader than anticipated. 

“Under the present circumstances we do not feel it is in the interest of the Family Y – our 5,500 members and the volunteers who lead our association – to pursue the application further,” said Reeves. “Simply put, we need to focus on our greatest priorities: meeting our funding goals and keeping our construction plans and timeline on track as we continue to meet the needs of our community with our many programs and services.”

“We have every confidence in the septic system as designed and approved and will proceed with our efforts to build what really matters – a sustainable new Y for our community – in accordance with all the required approvals that are now in place,” said Reeves. 

In February, the Family Y announced that the new facility at the Family Y’s 32-acre Mahackeno campus will be built in stages, keeping pace with fundraising for the facility and ensuring the financial sustainability of the Family Y as a community center focused on developing youth, promoting healthy living and fostering a sense of social responsibility.

The Family Y has identified $31 million in funding to date, including nearly $7 million raised since launching its Building What Matters capital campaign a year ago. A significant portion of the remaining $5 million in cash and pledges will need to be secured by May 11 in order to meet financial and construction deadlines.

“We are encouraged by the response from leaders in our community to our recent appeals,” said Bonnie Strittmatter, President of the Family Y’s Board of Directors. “The $500,000 bequest from Y Trustee Emeritus Allen Raymond is just one of the significant leadership gifts received of late from our Board members and other Y supporters.”

“We’re hopeful that other local leaders will realize that the time to support our Y is now. It’s not a matter of dreaming up a new Y somewhere downtown, or of somehow remaining in our current home past 2014,” said Strittmatter. “After more than 15 years of painstaking work, it really does come down to a new Y for our community at Mahackeno or no Y at all. The Y has been an integral, invaluable part of community life for nearly 100 years, and we believe wholeheartedly that the new Y will be just as important to our towns’ quality of life for the next 100 years.”

Provided that sufficient funding is in place by mid-May, construction will begin in October on Phase I of the new Y facility, starting with a 55,000 sq. ft. building that will include a lap pool and family/teaching pool; expansive Wellness Center; multi-purpose Gymnasium; three group-fitness studios; a Child Watch/Kids’ Adventure Gym area; five locker rooms; and other amenities of a modern, family-oriented Y facility. Future plans call for adding a Child Care wing and Gymnastics Center to this core building.

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