Whitney Pier Boys and Girls Club building expansion work slows
Costs rise and group looks for donations to complete addition that will double clubhouse space
The Whitney Pier Boys and Girls Club is looking for more help to complete its expansion project.
Work began in May to put an addition on the existing clubhouse to more than double its space, but the cost of the project has risen and the club is looking for more donations to get the job done.
The club's executive director, Chester Borden, said the expansion is about three-quarters complete.
"The newer building, they're putting the siding on next week, so we're trying to button it up for the winter," he said.
The project relies heavily on donated money and labour. As of the end of August, work was behind schedule, due in part to poor weather, and the club put out a plea for more volunteers.
"It went pretty good for a little while," said Borden. "A lot of people were showing up, a lot of things were getting done. Now it's slowing down again. I mean, you're around Christmas time and stuff like that. But money is getting tight."
The project has uncovered issues with the foundation under the old building that need to be addressed, and Borden said the heating system and duct work will be expensive. He guesses the final cost could rise to as much as $500,000.
He said the club's board of directors will renew its fundraising efforts in the new year. He's also hoping the holiday spirit will elicit some more help from the community.
"Drop by, lend a hand, give a donation," he said. "What a nice gift for around Christmas time. Let's get this thing done."
'All I want for Christmas...'
While the work continues, the club's members have moved into a space in the school across the street. Borden said they're eager to move back in.
He said kids that are members have told him: "All I want for Christmas is to get back in the club."
Borden now hopes that will happen in the spring.