Windsor

Former Chatham YMCA to become housing for international students

The growing number of international students studying at St. Clair College's Chatham campus has inspired a developer to convert the former downtown YMCA into student housing.

The first phase of 'La Residence' is expected to open in April

The former YMCA building is located on King Street West in downtown Chatham. The redevelopment began in November. (Submitted by Municipality of Chatham-Kent)

The growing number of international students studying at St. Clair College's Chatham campus has inspired a developer to convert the former downtown YMCA into student housing.

The first phase of "La Residence" is expected to open in April and will house 64 students. The three-phase project is expected to cost $9 million and will have room for 200.

Brian Chute, project supervisor for Everlast Group, said many Indian and Chinese students are attending St. Clair College, who need a place to stay.

"So we saw an opportunity and started coming up with ideas with how to develop this property into student housing."

The development also includes refinishing the tennis courts on the property and giving residents access to kayaks and canoes to use on Thames River.

Students will live in "pods" that house eight. The units include two bathrooms and a communal living room and kitchen.

About the Author

Jonathan Pinto is a reporter/editor at CBC Windsor, primarily assigned to Afternoon Drive, CBC Radio's regional afternoon show for southwestern Ontario. Email jonathan.pinto@cbc.ca.

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