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New Views (and Video) of New Family Y at Mahackeno

With our long-awaited Zoning Permit in hand, the Westport Weston Family Y is proceeding with plans to begin construction of our new Family Y on our Mahackeno campus. We will soon announce the date of our groundbreaking.

As our campaign to fund and construct a sustainable, modern and fully accessible new home for the Y enters the build-out phase, we’ve created a new video and renderings that showcase what our new Y will look like from both the outside and inside. (Click on the image above to view the 6-minute video; see below for a photo gallery of architectural illustrations.)

The first stage of the new Family Y will be a 54,000 sq. ft. facility that will include a 10-lane lap pool and warm-water family/teaching pool; expansive Health & Wellness Center; Gymnasium for multiple sports and activities; three large group-fitness studios; a Child Watch/Kids’ Adventure Gym area; and other amenities of a full-service, family-oriented Y facility.

Our new Y is expected to open in November, 2014.

Designed by the renowned architectural firm Robert A.M. Stern Architects, the building will be situated on the northeast corner of the property, bordered by the Merritt Parkway and the escarpment overlooking the Saugatuck River. Camp Mahackeno, our community’s storied summer day camp, is located just across scenic Poplar Plains Brook from the new Y facility.

The Y's Mahackeno campus, with the first stage of the new Y outlined in yellow.

Such a location offered more than ease of access; the building itself will serve as a buffer between the roadway and the rest of the property. Setting the building along and within the southern-facing ledge not only helped minimize its footprint and energy use, it also opened up a magnificent vista.

“The Family Y’s Mahackeno Outdoor Center afforded us a magnificent opportunity to construct a state-of-the-art facility,” said Robert Stern, FAIA, Founder and Senior Partner of Robert A.M. Stern Architects.

Locating the new Y facility on these grounds will be a transformative event for the communities we serve. The 32-acre campus will now be accessible year-round and offer a range of programming and recreation that is possible in very few places anywhere.

The property will be cared for in a way that is consistent with the Y’s long-standing commitment to stewardship of the environment. The acres of open space of woodlands, riparian habitat and existing camp and recreational space will be maintained – indeed, enhanced.

Imagine these possibilities at a new Family Y at Mahackeno:

• Wooded trails for walking, jogging and cross-country skiing
• Riverside benches along the restored banks of the Saugatuck River
• Canoeing and other activities on Lees Pond
• Integrated environmental education programs

The inside of the building will be designed to a high standard of energy efficiency, with the goal that our new Y will be a standard-setter for environmental sensitivity, said Kevin Smith. A longtime Westporter, Smith is a Partner at Robert A.M. Stern Architects (RAMSA) and serves as Project Manager.

Upon completion of all construction stages, the Family Y at Mahackeno will comprise 102,000 sq. ft. and will include a Gymnastics Center, Child Care wing and expanded Aquatics and Health & Wellness areas.

To date, our campaign to “Build What Matters” has raised more than 90 percent of the necessary funds.  To be on sound financial footing by the time we open our doors in late 2014, we must raise a further $4 million. To find out how you can help, please call Paul Bernetksy, Chief Development Officer, at 203-226-8981, ext. 115, or email