Andover YMCA releases renderings of upcoming renovations

April 29 marks the one-year anniversary that a destructive tornado that moved through the town of Andover and parts of southeastern Sedgwick County.
Published: Apr. 18, 2023 at 1:33 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - The Andover YMCA has released artist renderings of planned renovations nearly a year after a tornado struck the town and badly damaged the facility.

The renderings show an upgraded facility and water park.

Andover water park renovation plan.
Andover water park renovation plan.(Andover YMCA)

Crews have worked to rebuild and open the YMCA after last April’s EF3 tornado. The YMCA is enhancing the splash pad and stocking the infant area with new amenities/

Tuesday’s release of the renderings follows regular updates from the YMCA about its rebuilding progress. The plans spark excitement for the community heavily impacted by the violent storm.

“We all remember where we were. Certainly we’re so happy and proud of our staff that kept everybody safe. That’s what we’ll always remember about that night,” said Wichita Area YMCA President & CEO Ronn McMahon.

Since April 29, 2022, the Andover YMCA has been a construction zone. With the exception of a few walls, the inside of the facility was gutted.

“With a bad situation, we’re trying to look at it as an opportunity,” McMahon said.

As rebuilding continues, the waterpark is set to reopen in a few weeks, just in time for summer. When YMCA members eventually get to walk inside the larger facility, a new family-friendly addition, a Lucky Climber,” will replace the rock climbing wall that was damaged.

“It’s customized, 44 feet high, going to take up the whole cylinder for kids to play. “It’s really aesthetically pleasing. I think the community is going to love it,” McMahon said.

To get the facility back to where it is approaching a year since the tornado, McMahon credits contractors and architects for re-imagining the YMCA for the future.

“Set it up for the next 10, 15, 20 years to make sure it’s the state-of-the-art YMCA that it was before, and now it’s going to be a little bit of an upgrade,” he said.