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YMCA of Lethbridge hits historic membership numbers

YMCA of Lethbridge hits historic membership numbers
WATCH ABOVE: It's been a little more than three weeks since the new Cor Van Raay YMCA opened its doors to the public. The facility, which is North America's third-largest YMCA, has not only seen a high volume of visitors, it's more than doubled its membership.

It’s been a little more than three weeks since the new Cor Van Raay YMCA opened its doors to the public, and North America’s third-largest YMCA has not only seen a high volume of visitors, it’s more than doubled its membership.

“The community response has been amazing, more than we could have ever expected, faster than we could have ever expected, all good problems to have and definitely Lethbridge has been excited to have a facility like this in their community because they’re coming out in droves,” said Ross Jacobs, director of marketing & communications with the YMCA of Lethbridge.

READ MORE: Cor Van Raay YMCA at ATB Centre in Lethbridge opens its doors to the public

The previous location had roughly 1,500 members. Now, just three weeks after the new Y opened, that number has more than doubled to roughly 4,800 — a record high in the entire history of the YMCA of Lethbridge.

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“We’ve exceeded every target that we set for ourselves, so we were expecting at the end of this month to be sitting around 3,500 members. Then obviously at 4,800 members, we’ve exceeded that and our end of the summer goal was to be at 5,000 members,” added Jacobs.

It’s a number they are well on track to hit. In all, the new location has welcomed more than 51,000 visitors though the doors, but the volume isn’t leaving everyone happy.

“We have heard some frustration with people in terms of lines and waiting because so much of Lethbridge is wanting to use the facility that we’re working on those lines,” Jacobs said.

I think it’s just a matter of us getting into the groove of figuring out how to effectively get people through the facility.”

READ MORE: Lethbridge YMCA announces program reductions, pool closure as move approaches

It’s a much different issue compared to the old building on Stafford Drive, which city council voted to be demolished at a cost of around $1.3 million. The cleared-up space will further the city’s civic common master plan, featuring a parking lot and green space.