Building the “new” Westport Weston Family YMCA at the Mahackeno campus was an enormous undertaking.
Countless public hearings — and nearly 2 dozen lawsuits — delayed planning, groundbreaking and construction for years.
LANDTECH — the Westport-based civil engineering, site planning, project design, environmental and construction management firm — was there every step of the way. They worked with Robert A.M. Stern Architects and many others, completing the finished product — finally — in 2014.
Except it wasn’t finished. Phase 2 — 22,000 more square feet, including a gymnastics center and enhanced exercise, wellness and healthcare studios, along with a redesign and renovation of the adjacent Mahackeno Outdoor Center — opened last year. Once again, there were challenges (like a global pandemic).
The Westport Weston Family YMCA’s Phase 2 project added a gymnastics center, and several studios.
But there were no lawsuits. The project came in under budget, and ahead of deadline.
Now the Y’s Phase 2 has been named Best Large Civic Project in the entire state.
The award comes from the Connecticut Building Congress, an association spanning every important trade group in the state.
“We worked with neighbors on the site plans and landscaping,” says LANDTECH principal (and Saugatuck native) Pete Romano. “There were no lawsuits at all. The process went very smoothly.”
LANDTECH’s role was broad. They collaborated with SLAM Architects and permitting groups like Conservation and Planning & Zoning, and closed out the project for a certificate of occupancy. Getting Mahackeno open last summer — when so many other camps were closed — was crucial for many youngsters and their families.
The Mahackeno Outdoor Center pool.
“It was a group effort at a trying time,” Romano notes. “Town Hall offices were not open. People were working from home. But in the end, everyone rowed in the same direction.”
The CBC award honors every group that had a hand in the Y’s Phase 2, from the excavators and pavers to the pool and plate glass folks. Turner Construction — the firm that built Phase 1 — was involved again too.
Single tickets for Westport Country Playhouse’s all-virtual 2021 season go on sale Tuesday (May 4, noon).
The Playhouse’s 2021 season — from June 15 through December 19 — has been reconceived as diverse entertainment, tailored for digital enjoyment. All content will be available on the Playhouse website, on-demand for patrons’ convenience. Single tickets, starting at $25 for staged productions and $20 for Script in Hand play readings, may be purchased by phone (203-227-4177) or online.
The first of 3 new virtual productions is “Tiny House,” a comedy (June 29- July 18). The second virtual production, “Doubt: A Parable” — a Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning drama runs November 2-21.
Two HD video productions from Playhouse archives will stream on-demand: “Man of La Mancha” (August 23-September 5), and another (to be announced, September 13-26).
Three Script in Hand play readings include “The Savannah Disputation” (June 15-20). The others are October 19 – 24, and December 14 – 19.
Special pre- and post-show events are planned, including virtual LGBT Night Out cocktail parties, and interactive talkbacks.
For the 2nd year in a row, there will be no audiences in the Westport Country Playhouse. But the show(s) will go on.(Photo/Robert Benson)
If you missed it — no problem. The Westport Arts Advisory Committee has created 2 displays of lawn signs, featuring inspiring art and words from elementary and high school artists. They’re outside Town Hall and on Jesup Green, through May 5.
Student artwork on Jesup Green (Photo/Amy Schneider)
The Westport Weston Family YMCA’s Mahackeno Outdoor Center opens for members this weekend. Activities include 2 playgrounds, a large sports field, basketball court, dodgeball pit, walking trails, pavilions and (from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday), giant slides.
Coming soon: sports programs (registration begins April 3), canoeing, archery, pool and splash pad (after May 1), bouldering wall, fishing, outdoor group fitness classes and more.
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