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DOWNTOWN YMCA: Plans Unveiled

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Exercise enthusiasts got a sneak peak at a new downtown fitness facility Friday.

The Polk County Convention Complex will be transformed into the Wellmark YMCA.

The Y obtained the facility through a swap of downtown facilities.

The Y says it has raised about 90-percent of the $30-million needed for the project.

Once completed, it will include a gym, a track, racquetball and handball courts and a community room.

There will also be a new 50-meter swimming pool capable of holding major aquatic events within the 180,000-square foot facility.

“To be in the heart of downtown, there will be a 50 meter indoor pool, connected to the skywalk with the facilities we have as part of this, and the programs that we’re going to run here, it’s going to be second to none for a downtown YMCA anywhere in the United States,” Des Moines YMCA CEO, Vernon Delpesce said.

The goal is to start renovations sometime this year.

Once the work begins it’ll take ten months to renovate the interior of the complex and about 14 months to complete the pool.