Old Downtown YMCA Site

edited November 2007 in Lansing
I don't believe there is a dicussion started for the Old Downtown YMCA site already, so here it goes....

Published November 15, 2007
[ From Lansing State Journal ]

YMCA site not sold, but plans are in works
Developers show interest in building on Lenawee Street

Jeremy W. Steele
Lansing State Journal

YMCA of Metropolitan Lansing could be close to selling its former downtown home.

City officials have been contacted by developers interested in buying the 2-acre site on Lenawee Street that has been vacant since January 2003.

But YMCA officials said the deal is not a sure thing, despite a "sold" sign placed at the site weeks ago by the organization's real estate agent.


"We intend to sell it, but it has not been sold," YMCA President Tony Fragale said Wednesday. "We are looking to get that sold early next year. But not until the deal is done is it a sure thing."

The nonprofit moved out of the six-story building at 301 W. Lenawee St., which it had occupied since 1951, nearly five years ago in favor of new facilities in Lansing Township and on Washington Square.

The building features four floors of dorm-style rooms, which sat vacant during the organization's final years in the building. Several efforts to redevelop the building or build a new YMCA facility at the site failed.

Lansing Economic Development Corp. President Bob Trezise said he's had talks with the developers interested in the building.

Neither he nor Fragale would identify those parties. But Trezise said at least one possible investor has done other projects in the area.

"We are working with those developers on a grand vision for that site," said Trezise, adding that plans are in early stages. "Our No. 1 priority would be to save the building. If that's not possible, then we'd want a very significant building to replace it."

Contact Jeremy W. Steele at 377-1015 or jwsteele@lsj.com.

I'm not 100% sure what I would want to see there, but i would say "mixed-use" is a safe bet. :) mid to high rise would be cool for residential... a great asset would be the park just north-east of the site.


  • In the Greater Lansing Business Monthly, in July I think, it said that Harry Hepler (MotorWheel Lofts) was working on developing this site. He seems to do high quality stuff, I can;t wait to see what they come up with for the site.
  • Speaking of Motor Wheel Lofts... WOW, I had completely forgotten about that development since I left. The model they have up on their website looks incredible… something that certainly wouldn’t make you think of Lansing, Michigan; more like a big city like Chicago.
  • edited November 2007
    Tex, just a heads up but please do post a link to whatever articles you find. It's common internet courtesy, and on top of that, papers don't like when people post their full articles, anyway, let alone when someone doesn't it link the story back to that paper.

    As for the issue, this is heartening. It's funny the broker has a "sold" sign on the YMCA building, and for so long, though. I wonder if that's even legal. Anyway, the article makes it sound like something big is planned for the building which is more than I expected. What I expected was to hear that this would be torn down and replaced by a parking lot or some one or two-story property. Trezise is hinintg at something substational it seems.
  • I think this is an extremely important site because it is kitty-corner to Reutter Park. Eventually that park will be surrounded by decent sized buildings, giving it the potential to be a showcase urban park. Also, the YMCA prperty could very well be a catalyst for downtown to stretch towards the freeway.
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