City hopes to save Roswell youth center

ROSWELL, N.M. (KRQE) – One of the only places for children in Roswell is in trouble. The more than 100-year-old community center is falling apart and if the city doesn’t fix it fast young people may not have a place to go.

The Yucca Rec building has cracked floors, warped ceilings and two of its three stories are too dangerous to use.

“Problems are severe,” said Jared Secret.

Secret and his 6-year-old son, Zane, go to the Yucca Center regularly.

He says it’s a Roswell staple, but needs to be remodeled.

“You get old roofs, old HVAC, old electrical, plumbing, flooring and pretty soon those deteriorate,” said Roswell Parks and Recreation Director Tim Williams.

The city says they’ve had to move some kids activities and fitness classes to other buildings in town because of the safety hazards. They say the building is in such bad shape if they don’t do something now, the future of the Yucca Center is in jeopardy. That’s why they’re now asking the community for help.

“I know a lot of people in this community really care about what we do with the Yucca Center and how it’s going to move forward,” said Williams.

The city is holding a series of focus groups to get residents input. They’re hoping the community will come together and help find a way to save the center.

Upcoming Public Forums

  • August 27th: 6:00 p.m. Roswell High School
  • August 30th: 11:00 a.m. State Game and Fish Office
  • September 1st: 6:00 p.m. Cahoon Park Office

“We’re hoping with the interest we can gain support in the community we can find the funding to remodel the Yucca Center or rebuild a new one,” said Williams.

People are hopeful.

“Its extremely a good program,” said resident Jim Curry. “Whatever we need to do to continue it, we need to do.”

The city says if the center has to close, it would move the youth programs to other buildings, but it says it’s optimistic that won’t happen.

A new center would cost more than $7 million to build.

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