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      Marquette YMCA plans to expand

      The YMCA in Marquette is set to begin substantial renovations and expansions in the coming months to accommodate its growing list of members.

      It's a community hotspot in Marquette. It's a place for community fitness, recreation and just a place for people to meet and greet.

      But both its membership and functions are growing. And that's a problem for a building that stays the same.

      That's why to stop potential membership loss, The Y first looked at expansion possibilites two years ago.

      They couldn't do it then, but now the plans are drawn up and The Y is ready to expand.

      "We went back and looked at it a year and a half ago. The number one reason people were leaving is that we're too crowded and there just wasn't space. And with the combining of the girls and the boys sports seasons, gym space is really difficult to find in the community" said Marquette YMCA CEO Lisa Coombs Gerou.

      So multiple things are going to change. For one, the fitness area will double in size. A new entryway with offices for easier customer assistance will be added. And perhaps most importantly, a new gym with an indoor track and concession area will be added.

      So far, member response has been postive.

      "It's hard to get on a machine when its real busy. But the great things they do is for kids. And when they expand, I think their programs for young people are going to expand along with them, and that's, that's I think the great thing." said member Steve Lindberg.

      The YMCA has obtained a $3 million loan for the project, but they've already gotten a stream of donations from community members wanting to chip in.

      "We're really in a silent phase of just kind of feeling what the community would contribute to our expansion and its been very successful. We've had a lot of great feedback and a number of people have already committed to donating." said Gerou.

      The facility expects the renovations to be complete by early 2015, and is getting ready to break ground on the project next month.