Sat. May 18th, 2024

Memphis’ first community center gets a $4 million renovation

By Bria Bolden

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) -Memphis’ first community center gets a $4 million dollar facelift.

City leaders celebrated the re-opening of the Gaston Community Center earlier this week.

The center, built in 1934, is Bluff City’s oldest community center.

Its $4 million renovation began in 2022, as part of the city’s Accelerate Memphis Project.

“It’s a much more beautiful space,” said Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland. “Much more functional. As you can see the kids love it. It’s really reflective of the community, beautiful, and has a lot of promise. We’re here to serve and this is what it’s all about.”

The renovated building houses a brand-new gym, fitness room, classrooms, and more.

The windows of the center were previously boarded shut. Now, they help fill the building with natural light.

It’s perfect for the kiddos already enrolled in the summer camp there.

“I’ve been here two or three times since the start of summer camp and to see how many kids at this center in particular come walking up for day camp, gives you an idea of how important this is,” said Director of Memphis Parks Nick Walter.

13-year-old Londyn Adams lives in the neighborhood and says she’s been coming to the community center for years.

“I love everything about it,” said Adams. “It’s very very nice. I love the architecture. I love all the details and designs they put in there.”

She hopes the newly renovated space encourages families to spend their time here.

“It gives children opportunities to have and not be bored all day in the summer and gives them to meet new people and learn new things as well,” said Adams.

The community center is open this summer from 6 AM to 8 PM Monday thru Friday and 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturdays.

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