New Youth Center supports Family Covenant goals Army
By Phil Reidinger
Fort Sam Houston Public Affairs Office
The second official groundbreaking ceremony related to Base Realignment and Closure activities at Fort Sam Houston began the construction for a new Child and Youth Services Center Feb. 28.
The construction heralds the command’s continuing commitment to Families announced during the installation Army Family Covenant ceremony held Nov 8, 2007.
The ceremony host, Col. Wendy Martinson, U. S. Army Garrison commander, said, “This new building recognizes our commitment to provide services focused on sustaining a quality of life that recognizes the essential contributions and often tremendous sacrifices of our Families who also serve along with their spouses.”
Avinash Rachmale, president and CEO Lakeshore Group, Lakeshore Engineering Services, Inc. noted the project would be completed in 450 days. “That is our contract commitment and we are on the way. We have the completed the design and the preliminary foundation is in. We have a really hard-working crew here and we are getting compliments from the base.”
One of the first Child and Youth services centers to be built for the Department of the Army, the center will support activities for middle school and high school children ages 6 through 12 and feature culinary arts and computer technology programs as well as activity rooms and a multipurpose room with basketball goals.
The new youth center is designed to support the increased youth population of the installation as a result of BRAC.
Thanking the community leaders for attending the ceremony, Paul Matthews, Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation director, said, “We look forward to bringing this new facility into a successful operation serving the military community.”
With a total of 20,668 square feet, the building design includes a heating, ventilation and cooling system that accommodates automatic temperature control based on activities in the various rooms. A closed circuit television monitoring system will allow staff to supervise children participating in center activities.
The central location of the building will make it easier for students and parents to use and accommodate use by children whose parents are assigned to the Warrior in Transition Unit and living in the Fisher Houses, the Powless Guest House and their homes on Fort Sam Houston.