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Center gets green light from council

City OKs lease for 3,900-square-foot community center on Sierra Highway in Canyon Country

Posted: July 11, 2012 6:00 a.m.
Updated: July 11, 2012 6:00 a.m.

The Santa Clarita City Council voted unanimously Tuesday evening to approve a lease for a new Canyon Country Community Center.

The center will be housed in a new 3,900-square-foot commercial building at Flying Tiger Drive and Sierra Highway.

At Tuesday’s meeting, two Canyon Country community members said they approved of the project and its location, saying that the project was a good starting point for Canyon Country.

“We look forward to this being a great success,” said Canyon Country Advisory Committee Chairman Alan Ferdman. “I’m hoping this will be a model that we can duplicate around the city.”

Another Santa Clarita resident voiced concerns about the amount of parking at the center. City Manager Ken Pulskamp said as part of the lease, the community center would be eligible to use 27 percent of parking spaces in the business complex.

The new location will allow residents to access the center on foot, by bike or by bus, said city spokeswoman Gail Ortiz in an interview last week.

City officials have held a series of events to hear from Canyon Country residents about what they’d like in a community center. Responses range from “Zumba gold” senior fitness classes to Lego activities to chess classes.

Other suggestions have included home economics, banking, home skills and computer training; homework help; and inter-generational art programs, which would place seniors and youth in classes together, Ortiz said.

The city is hoping to partner with local businesses and nonprofit organizations to provide services for Canyon Country residents at the center, Ortiz said.  Because of the center’s size, it would serve more as a hub for activities and have certain activities held elsewhere.

The $103,800 annual cost of the lease would come out of the city’s general fund, Ortiz said.

About 2,000 to 3,000 Newhall residents currently visit the Newhall Community Center each month, and Ortiz said she hopes for a similar number at the Canyon Country Community Center once it’s running.

The city hopes to open the center by December.


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