Marion Co., West Virginia, Incapacity Motion Middle shifting to larger floor as a result of flooding | Information
On Tuesday afternoon, the Marion County Disability Action Center announced that it will soon be moving to a higher level, hoping to reopen in its new location by November 1.
The nonprofit, which was flooded multiple times this summer due to torrential rain, low altitude, and a broken drainage system, will be located near the Gateway Connector at Valley Healthcare Systems’ current location at 448 Leonard Ave. move to Fairmont.
Julie Sole, executive director of the Disability Action Center, said she and other staff at the organization had toured 11 locations in the past month and a half, but Leonard Avenue was always her favorite.
“When the floods started I didn’t even think about moving, but when we were repeatedly flooded it became an option,” said Sole. “But in a million years I would never have thought that we would already have found a location and would promote the purchase of a system. …
“The way the pieces came together was humble and remarkable. Our city, county and state governments work together to help us, as do private donors and grantors, as well as religious organizations and brotherhoods. Everyone has made this a priority and worked together to make it happen. “
The largest donation to date was a $ 200,000 local economic development grant, made to the center through the efforts of Sen. Bob Beach and Sen. Mike Caputo.
Sole said Tuesday that other state lawmakers, including Marion County representatives in the House of Delegates, are also looking for additional funding for the move.
Although the 10,000-square-foot building is slightly smaller than the nonprofit’s current footprint, plans are already in place to renovate and expand the facility to provide more services to DAC customers, according to Sole.
“We want to expand our fitness options,” said Sole. “We’re going to have a nice recreation and fitness area, but the most important thing we can do here is expand our staff development programs, which are Feel Good Meals and Feel Good Laundry, with some other small businesses that we have. This lower section really gives a more commercial feel where we can really do some workforce development training. “
According to Sole, the new location is also more centrally located. She hopes that some of the center’s customers can lead more normal lives with better access to the Disabled Action Center.
“For many of the customers we look after, it is quite possible that they have a quasi-independent living environment,” said Sole. “This facility is on the bus route. It’s accessible. It’s near apartments. We are just so blessed to be able to make this happen. “
In total, it will take around $ 750,000 to complete the move and initial renovations, according to Sole, though she expects there will be more once they settle in the new building.
“We felt that very early on this was a number to find a comparable facility that had the space we needed and we are still working within that budget,” said Sole. “There are some other projects and enhancements we might even be able to do in this area once we get here, and we will be able to fine-tune it.”
Sole said the center hopes to complete the purchase of the building by September 1. The month of September will be used to renovate the new building, while the official move will take place in October.
She added that she did not expect any interruption in services throughout the process.
John Mark Shaver, editor of Fairmont News, can be reached at 304-844-8485 or [email protected].