Westlake YMCA is back on track

Family donation supplies needed funds


COMING SOON—The new YMCA facility in Westlake Village will be completed soon, due to a large donation from residents Doug and Penny Yarrow. Construction was put on hold when the organization ran out of building funds. Courtesy of Diane Rumbaugh

COMING SOON—The new YMCA facility in Westlake Village will be completed soon, due to a large donation from residents Doug and Penny Yarrow. Construction was put on hold when the organization ran out of building funds. Courtesy of Diane Rumbaugh

It’s been 11 years since the City of Westlake Village embarked on a joint venture with Triunfo YMCA to build a community park and YMCA sports complex.

While the community park, near Lindero Canyon Road and Thousand Oaks Boulevard, opened earlier this year, the 60,000-square-foot YMCA facility has sat incomplete since 2015, when the organization ran out of funding to fi nish it.

A recent donation of almost $4 million from Westlake Village residents Doug and Penny Yarrow put the project back on track. Ronnie Stone, CEO of the Southeast Ventura County YMCA, said he expects the $35-million facility will be open by spring.

“We did the building in three phases. We anticipated stopping after each phase, and on the third phase we didn’t have enough money to continue,” Stone said. “So we put it on hold until we raised the remaining funds.”

When it’s finished, the complex will house a fitness center, two pools, a basketball court and a multipurpose space for classes as diverse as business and yoga.

HOPEFUL—Ronnie Stone, CEO of the Southeast Ventura County YMCA, said he expects the $35-million facility to be ready for the public to use next year. Courtesy of YMCA

HOPEFUL—Ronnie Stone, CEO of the Southeast Ventura County YMCA, said he expects the $35-million facility to be ready for the public to use next year. Courtesy of YMCA

Stone recently had to revise part of the facility’s design at the behest of the Westlake Village City Council, which took issue with the proposed signage. The original design featured the YMCA logo in red and yellow lettering against a white background.

“We have what I’ll call YMCA branding rules. Our colors come in five different colorful logos, but they have to be on a white background,” Stone said. “(The council) didn’t like the way that looked, so we went back to the branding standards and found that stainless steel was one of the approved recommendations. It worked out, because it fits well and looks nice.”

The newly approved sign will have the YMCA logo in stainless steel lettering without the white background.

Stone said the YMCA will host several events as the building nears completion.

On Sept. 9, Stone and other YMCA officials will unveil the building’s sign.

The YMCA started raising money for the project in 2007. David Murdock, CEO of Dole Foods and a resident of Lake Sherwood, donated the lion’s share of the funding, $21 million.

The rest of the money was raised through donations and fundraising. With the recent $4 million from the Yarrows, Stone said, the YMCA has raised $33.5 million total.

“We basically have $33.5 million in our hands right now, but in the next six to 12 months we’ll raise an additional $1.5 million to offset any (additional costs),” Stone said. “If we fall short, we’ll obviously borrow or do whatever we need to so we won’t stop construction. The final $1.5 million is still being raised, but it won’t stop the project.”

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