Home / Articles / News / News / Movin’ on along
Print this Article
Thursday, Sept. 22, 2005 03:53 am

Movin’ on along

Planned east side community center seeks partners

The proposed $4 million community center on Springfield’s east side has entered its next phase of planning, says Boys & Girls Club executive director Kristin Allen. Allen says that her organization, working with the Ministerial Alliance, has defined several areas of service that the new building will provide, including programs aimed at senior citizens, educational and career development, sports, and recreation. Now, she says, they will “identify major entities to provide these services.”
Representatives of the Boys & Girls Club and the Ministerial Alliance have met with Mayor Timothy Davlin to discuss how the city of Springfield can help. U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin got the ball rolling in February, announcing a $750,000 federal grant to provide the initial funding. Tension arose early on between the Boys & Girls Club, which had been tapped to lead the project, and the Ministerial Alliance, but the dispute was quickly resolved [Todd Spivak, “Moving forward,” March 10]. The Rev. Silas Johnson of Calvary Baptist Church says that the two groups “worked things out for the good of the community.”
Johnson says that he would like to see the new center serve the community as a whole, a place where community members could also hold such events as wedding receptions and family reunions. Since the two groups settled their differences, “there is a positive, cooperative working relationship,” Allen says. Once the public and private partners are in place, the planning committee will find a site somewhere east of Ninth Street for the 10-acre complex, which will be similar to a community center in Rockford.
It made more sense, Allen says, to first establish the programs and partners before settling on where to build so that planners could ensure that the site will accommodate all the services they want to provide, as well as future expansion. Wherever the new center is built, Allen says, environmental, safety, and accessibility issues must also be taken into account. Although the list of possible sites has been narrowed down, specific sites are not being discussed publicly; Allen is concerned about the “economic ramifications of expressing interest in a particular property.”
Log in to use your Facebook account with

Login With Facebook Account

Recent Activity on IllinoisTimes


  • Thu
  • Fri
  • Sat
  • Sun
  • Mon
  • Tue
  • Wed


Thursday May 24th