Youth Center

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Some news and articles on the Andover Youth Center:

Andover teens began asking for a teen center in the 1960's. In 1994 when 3 Andover Teens committed suicide, the townspeople looked to building a teen center as a gathering place for Andover's youth. The town hired Bill Fahey to run a town-wide youth program and work towards construction of a center.

In October of 1997 a volunteer group opened a center for Middle School children on Reservation Road in the Fellowship Hall of the West Parish Church. The location is walking distance from the West Middle School, but not the Doherty Middle School.

The AYS Headquarters moved from the Town Offices to 37-39 Pearson Street in 2008. This location provided more space for Teen activities.

In July of 2000, the Andover Youth Foundation suggested land behind the Chandler Fire Station for a Youth Center. Yvon and Noella Cormier of Andover donated $1.5 million to the Town of Andover for a 6 acre youth center in West Andover. The center would be called the Cormier Family Youth Center. Yvon owns the Cormier Construction Company. Landfill and playing field issues caused plans for the West Andover location to be abandoned in 2005 in favor of a downtown location.

Funding and other issues, such as playing field availability and the proximity of a landfill, plagued the project for the West Andover site. In December of 2005 $1 million dollar in infrastructure costs were added to the price tag delaying a June 2006 start date for construction of a Youth Center. Because of these issues discussion began on a site downtown behind the Doherty Middle School in 2006. An article asking the Town for $900,000 was withdrawn from the Town Warrant in 2006. Selectman Brian Major suggested a Special Town Meeting in the fall of that year to deal with the youth center.

The 2007 Town Meeting voted to use land behind Doherty Middle School. The suggestion was made at that time to build space that would be shared as a Youth Center and a Senior Center. Funding continued to be an issue. A private foundation - the Andover Youth Foundation was established to raise money and coordinate the process of building a youth center. A public project is required to pay state-set prevailing wages. Since a private organization is not the cost of the project is reduced substantially. Peg Campbell was promoted to the Foundation's president in June of 2007.

The Special Town Meeting in the Spring of 2013 approved using half of the $1.4 million Wood Trust (a fund established for the benefit of senior citizens) on the new Cormier Family Youth Center. The funding of the Cormier Family Youth Center came from a combination of town money and fundraising.

  • "South Church Takes up Youth Cause", Andover Townsman, July 7, 1994, page 1 & 6.
  • "South Church/Youth Council" Andover Townsman, July 14, 1994, page 1.
  • "Fields of Dreams Enters a New Phase”, October 27, 1994, Andover Townsman, page 1 & 31.
  • "Seniors Want to Expand Current Senior Center”,Andover Townsman, November 10, 1994, page 31.
  • "Advocates Move Andover Youth Center Downtown”, Eagle Tribune, page 1 & 7.
  • "Progress Comes Behind the Scenes", Eagle Tribune, April 11, 1995, Page 1.
  • "Volunteers Create New Youth Center", Andover Townsman, October 30, 1997, page 34.
  • "Private Group to Push for Youth Center", Andover Townsman, July, 1, 1999, page 1 & 10.
  • "Foundation: Give us Land, We'll Raise the Money," Andover Townsman, July 6, 2000.
  • "Youth Center Win Go-ahead”, Eagle Tribune, November 15, 2000.
  • "Foundation Nearly Pulls Plug on Youth Center", Andover Townsman, October 26, 2000, page 1 & 16.
  • "Youth Center Gets $30K from Andonna," Andover Townsman, September 27, 2001.
  • "Couple's Gift Boosts Project," Eagle Tribune, October 1, 2001.
  • "Youth Center $75,000 Richer," Andover Townsman, November 5, 2001.
  • "Planners Mull Legality of Youth Center Plan", Eagle Tribune, October 30, 2003, page 1 & 2.
  • "$120K Raised at Telethon for Youth Center," Andover Townsman, February 12, 2004.
  • "Where are we now on Centers?" Andover Townsman, June 23, 2005.
  • "YF: We will Pursue Only a Separate Youth Center", Andover Townsman, August 11, 2005, page 4.
  • "Students Spearhead Effort to Use “Trash Cash” Bonus for Youth Center", Eagle Tribune, January 28, 2005, page 13 & 14.
  • "Youth Center Price Tag Grows to $4.2 Million", Eagle Tribune, December 22, 2005.
  • "New Center Further off Schedule," Boston Globe, January 22, 2006.
  • "Fall Meeting Discussed for Youth Center Vote," Andover Townsman, April 6, 2006.
  • "Further Delays in 10-year Quest for Youth Center Site", Eagle Tribune, September 5, 2006
  • "Youth Center Foundation: Center Won’t Make Area Traffic Worse", October 3, 2006.
  • "Youth Center Articles Placed on Town Warrant", Eagle Tribune, March 6, 2007.
  • "New Youth Center Leader Wants Project Finished in 2 Years", Andover Townsman, June 14, 2007, page 1 and 2.
  • "Foundation: Pact Could Save $1M-plus", Andover Townsman, June 21, 2007
  • "State Ruling Could Save $1M on Youth Center", Eagle Tribune, July 18, 2007 page 1 and 3.
  • "Youth Center May Cost Extra $2M", Eagle Tribune, September 28, 2007 page and 8.
  • "Youth Services May Get New HQ", Andover Townsman, May 1, 2008, page 1 & 2.
  • "AYF Get's Boost From State", Andover Townsman, August 21, 2008, page 1 and 2.
  • "Youth Foundation Gives Self-imposed Fundraising Deadline", Andover Townsman, January 4, 2009, page B1 and B2.
  • "Fresh Angle for Building Teen Center, Boston Globe Northwest, January 20, 2008, page 1 and 6.
  • "Youths' sweet dream advances to finish lane," Andover Townsman, April 25, 2013, p. 13.
  • "Forging common ground," Andover Townsman, May 16, 2013, p. 1.
...Youths' sweet dream advances to finish lane.... click to enlarge

  • "Youth Center scores key funding: Special Town Meeting vote takes project to $5.4M," Andover Townsman, May 9, 2013, p.1.
  • "Youth Center seeing final changes: expanded gym, generator proposed," Andover Townsman, June 20, 2013, p. 1.
  • "Youth Center expansion, upgrade approved: Two accounts tapped to supplement project," Andover Townsman, June 27, 2013, p. 1.
  • "Youth Center construction set for October," Andover Townsman, August 15, 2013, p. 1.
  • "Cormier Youth Center pact finally OK'd as bid deadline nears," September 12, 2013, p. 5.
  • "Roadblock for Youth Center: Bids cause snag in ground-breaking," Andover Townsman, October 10, 2013, p. 1.

--Kim 15:01, May 9, 2013 (EDT) --Eleanor (talk) 14:17, 26 May 2015 (EDT)

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