Access II Independent Living Center has reached an agreement on plans for an accessible Community Wellness Center. Local contractor Timberwolf Construction will be working with other local contractors for the project. Access II broke ground in June, and the building has been estimated to be completed in the summer of 2021. COVID-19 and rain have delayed construction timelines. The building will serve as a community fitness center, and community room open to everyone. Funds for the more than $750,000 for the building have already been secured, and Access II is now working on fundraising, including applying for local and national grants to help fund exercise equipment for the center.
BTC bank in Gallatin has committed to providing Access II with $15,000 towards the purchase of fitness equipment for the center. The funds will be dispersed in increments of $3,000 over the next 5 years. Gallatin Rotary Club has also assisted Access II in providing a grant through the Kimbrough Challenge and a club match totaling approximately $10,000 that will go toward furnishing tables, chairs and other items for the community space. CAPNCM, in Trenton has also contributed $500, toward the project.
Access II says they are still seeking donations from local businesses, organizations, and community members to finish purchasing fitness equipment and additional items for the center.
Access II says they still need to raise about $95,000 to finish purchasing equipment, furniture, software and other necessary items for the Health and Wellness Center. Each piece of commercial equipment typically ranges between 5 and 10 thousand dollars.
The facility will be built on property already owned by Access II ILC, inside the Industrial Park located off Highway 6 in Gallatin. The 10,000 sq. ft. facility will be open to the public and will serve two main functions. One side of the facility will be a fully accessible fitness center with 24- hour key fob access. Community members will have the option to purchase memberships for a monthly fee and some may qualify for memberships on a sliding scale. The design of the facility and the equipment inside will allow for people with, and without disabilities, to work toward their fitness and rehabilitation goals. This will be the only public fitness center of its kind in the area where a person who uses a wheelchair or assistive device will have access to this type of equipment.
The Wellness Center will also house a large community room with a fully accessible kitchen, bathroom and shower, tables and chairs and will be available to public and private groups, community classes, and events. Plans for the facility also include classrooms, accessible men’s and women’s locker rooms, showers, and changing areas. Additional uses for the facility include operating as a cooling and heating center during extreme temperatures, as well as a post-disaster emergency shelter if the need arises.
Access II will also open the facility to anyone who is needing to take a shower who does not have access to do so at home due to their disability.
All donations to the project are tax deductible.