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Watertown Family Y considers Sackets Harbor location

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SACKETS HARBOR — A new facility for the Watertown Family Y in Madison Barracks’s Health Club building is under consideration, as the organization and Lawler Realty hash out the project’s details.

Peter W. Schmitt, the Y’s executive director, said a facility in the village has been a project of interest for years, even though the village’s population is smaller than Watertown and Carthage, where it also has gyms. A potential facility would be modeled more after the smaller Carthage space.

“We’ve never been able to figure out how to do it, but I think we’re closer to having something that could be viable,” Mr. Schmitt said. “We’re a couple steps closer, but we’re 10 steps away.”

The developer has filed a $1 million Consolidated Funding Application with the state to make a laundry list of repairs to the building, on Pike Road.

“This is not a profitable venture for either of us. That’s why we need to look for the CFA process,” said Michael W. Campbell, the developer’s representative.

Both Mr. Schmitt and Mr. Campbell said the space would fill a need in the community and give new purpose to a historic building.

“When you can preserve a historic building while maintaining a current need, it doesn’t get better than that,” Mr. Schmitt said.

Mr. Campbell said the building hasn’t had a regular tenant in about a decade, but its basement locker rooms and showers have been used by boaters in the village.

Among the critical repairs he said would be needed are new windows, roof and boiler system. “Without those things, the utility cost is so high it’s cost prohibitive to operate,” Mr. Campbell said.

Aesthetic changes he said were necessary are new flooring and carpeting and large-scale renovations to the building’s gym space, which includes an overhanging walking track.

One idea for the project is to keep the first floor for gym activities and use the building’s second floor for office and conference space.

If a project were to happen, it would represent a return to the village for the Y, in which it operated for several years dating back to the early 1900s. Mr. Campbell said the organization has not had a presence in the village for decades.

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