The brand new $17-million YMCA in Moncton's north end will open its doors on Saturday.
The 35,000-square-foot satellite YMCA has several features not found at the main Y on Vaughan Harvey Boulevard.
Zane Korytko, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Moncton, said there are nose prints on the windows of the new building from people curious to get a peek inside.
"When I look behind me and I see the splash pad and the walking track and the adult slide — there's so many different things that we offer here. It's a completely different version of what the YMCA is on Vaughan Harvey." he said.
The new Y has a gymnasium and fitness centre, but it also has an indoor playground and splash pad. On the second floor, there is an indoor walking track with a built-in incline that will challenge walkers.
"If you're a walker you don't need to go to Champlain mall anymore." Korytko said. "Now you can come to the Y and you can walk around for free — no charge. Anybody can come in and use it at any time."
New Y 'very inclusive'
Natasha Ostaff, the chair of the YMCA of Greater Moncton board of directors, pointed out another special feature — a large universal change room.
"Universal locker room means it's open to everybody and anybody no matter gender," she said.
"Families together can go in as one. There are separate change areas, or change stalls, for people that they can change in without being out in the open."
Ostaff said the new building in the fast-growing north end is "very diverse" and "very inclusive."
The federal and provincial governments each committed $4 million to the project. The City of Moncton contributed $6 million, including $2 million on road development to extend Twin Oaks Drive.
The YMCA had raised $2.4 million of the goal of $3 million for the project when the pandemic hit, and halted the fundraising efforts.
"We launched the public campaign three days before COVID, so was our timing good? No," Korytko said with a laugh.
"But we've relaunched the campaign now and we're very confident that we're going to meet our $3 million."
Korytko said the north end YMCA was built with expandability in mind, so there's room to add on in the future.