Major development is in the works as many popular town venues experience tremendous growth.
The Westport Weston Family Y’
The Westport YMCA sold its 59 Post Road East location to local real estate developer David Waldman, as they have big plans – 54,000 square foot and 32 acres’ big. The Y, as it is affectionately called, has plans which are currently underway to move and expand its facility to their Mahackeno Campus located at 14 Allen Raymond Lane. This brand new Y is being built, nestled esthetically into a hillside, on the property where the Y’s summer camps have been held. The YMCA has owned this property for 70 years in thanks to the Bedford family. Scheduled to open in two phases, this first state of the art, fully equipped facility will boast the ‘Strittmatter Aquatic Center’; a 10-lane, 25 yard competitive lap-pool, a shallow 4-lane, 25 yards wide, warm water pool with a whirlpool bench and a zero depth entry (ramp) along with a very exciting – first in the state of Ct – ‘Aquatic Climbing Wall’ (kids can climb the 10-12 foot wall and then drop into the water). This new innovative play feature is sure to entice kids of all ages into the water. Also encompassed in this building will be a wellness center with lovely views of the Saugatuck River, a cardio room and a fitness center along with plenty of parking and modern bathrooms and lockers. A second phase with approved plans for an additional 102,000 square foot facility has plans which will include a separate child care wing, a gymnastics center and space for additional Y programs. The summer camp facility also features a 4-lane, 25 yard outdoor pool. “This is one of Westport’s great open spaces,” said Scott Smith, Director of Communications. “The extraordinary design of the new building, I’m told, is in modern Adirondack style.” Completion to open in the early fall is on schedule and is on budget. westporty.com.
The Levitt Pavilion
Each season the Levitt Pavilion provides over 50 evenings of live arts and entertainment (free of charge) for an audience of more than 50,000 people. To date the Pavilion has hosted more than one million guests beneath the stars and beside the water’s edge. Plans are currently underway to greatly improve these facilities and amenities which will benefit both the audience as well as the performing artists. A new LEED-certified building will be constructed and will feature a covered stage with vastly updated technical abilities, in hopes to further attract world-class artists, while also supporting newly emerging artists. The enhanced park will boast an improved River Walk, picnic groves, an information booth and a community hospitality center equipped with food services and indoor restrooms – each of which will feature universal access. levittpavilion.com
The Music Theatre of Ct
With a ‘passion for the stage and a stage for your passion’ motto, this Theatre has outgrown its current location. This premiere provider of musical theatre performance and training has signed a new lease (after 27 years in its current Westport location) and will be moving from 246 Post Road East in Westport, to 509 Westport Avenue, Norwalk. Construction for a brand new art theatre center is scheduled to begin in April and will include a 120 seat Black Box Theatre and venue for productions, 3 rehearsal studios, a scenic shop, a costume shop, dressing rooms and admin space. This new 6,800 square foot theatre is scheduled to open September 1st, 2014. The MTC produces an annual series of Equity productions featuring New York professionals (MTC MainStage), five annual student productions (MainStage Kids) and a conservatory-style school of performing arts with curriculum-based training for students ages four through high-school, and includes a nationally-recognized College-Bound in the Performing Arts program for performance career-focused high school students. “We’re just kind of over the moon,” said Kevin Connors, Executive Artistic Director. “We’ve been looking for a larger space for about 10 years. We plan to expand our curriculum and it’s going to be just awesome!” musictheatreofct.com.
The Westport Library
Ranked 8th amongst the most highly used public libraries in New England, the Westport Library, has officially entered into the new design stage, as it plans to increase its size by 34% to 65,000 square feet. A second floor along with a more unified north entrance via the Jesup Green will be constructed. Current plans expect the construction to begin 18 months from now and to continue for two years. The goal is to construct a library equipped to serve 21st century Westport residents; an enlarged auditorium, an expanded children’s library (on the main floor), and spaces designated to meet and exchange information while engaging in quiet thinking. Bonus: The Library will overlook both the Saugatuck River and the Jesup Green. westportlibrary.com