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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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YMCA lacks ‘acceptable’ offer for its building

The YMCA in downtown Spokane is looking for someone willing to pay $5.75 million for its five-story, 40-year-old building that happens to sit on property with 227 feet of frontage on the Spokane River.

The nonprofit organization is expanding a search begun in August, when it solicited offers from about 20 local prospective buyers. That search ended last month without an “acceptable” offer, said President and CEO Rig Riggins.

So now the organization is expanding the search by listing the property with the Spokane Traders Club, a commercial listing Web site, making contacts with potential buyers in Seattle and placing a specific asking price on the property.

“We’re trying to get a little more aggressive with the marketing of it,” said Riggins, who thinks the property could be transformed for any number of uses, including residential or commercial space. “Our hope is we’ll be able to do something with someone local. Then we would look outside.”

The property is just under an acre of land and the building has 77,000 square feet of space. The building was built in 1964 and has sublevels that hold two swimming pools. The YMCA’s parking area is separate and provided through a lease with the city, Riggins said. The property is assessed at $3.8 million, but Riggins said an independent appraisal, based on market value, supports the organization’s asking price.

Both the YMCA and the YWCA are trying to sell their properties to use the money to purchase five to eight acres of downtown land where they can develop a joint campus with new buildings for each organization. Neither has revealed where that land might be.

The YWCA already has an agreement to sell its riverfront property to SRM Development of Spokane for $4 million. Its 2.25-acre parcel on the north bank of the Spokane River, at 829 W. Broadway, is assessed at $2.8 million, title records show.

Directors of both organizations say the building and moving process would take about three years and would not disrupt services, as the old structures would continue operations until the new ones were ready for occupancy. However, the YWCA plans to close its swimming pool, effective Oct. 31, citing budgetary difficulties and duplications of services with the YMCA and with the Salvation Army, both of which offer swimming programs.

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