With four days left, The Friends of the Ypsilanti Freighthouse have $2,000 left to raise.
Ypsilanti could be getting a new community center. That is, if the Friends of the Ypsilanti Freighthouse can reach their $50,000 goal by 11:59 P.M., Saturday, February 28.
For 10 years, the Ypsilanti Freighthouse has been closed, in need of structural, esthetic, and functional repairs. The Friends hope their new crowdsourcing effort will help put them over the top in terms of funding these repairs. Susan Campbell, Secretary of the Board of Trustees said the $50,000 will be matched by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation if the goal is reached.
The final renovations include installing an energy efficient HVAC system, restrooms and plumbing to meet city code, a dry/wet fire suppression system for external and internal areas, upgrades to exterior lighting, and making the building compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. This round of renovations would finally allow the Freighthouse to be open. Campbell stated that these renovations would allow a "certificate of occupancy to be obtained, allowing for use by the public."
The long-term goals of the Friends are to make the Freighthouse a self-sustaining community center, open for public and private events, and being sustainable ecologically as well. The Freighthouse already has a rain garden, and it is possible that solar panels could be installed in the future.
Board Member, Nicole Porter, is hopeful that the Freighthouse will provide an attractive addition along the proposed light-rail system. Porter looks forward to people leaving their cars at the Freighthouse to use the train, then utilizing Ypsilanti businesses once they've returned.
Those looking to give toward the goal can do so by going to http://www.ypsifreighthouse.org and clicking the 'Donate Here' link, or they can give in person at the offices of Visual Compass Web Design, locate at 19 E. Cross Street, in Depot Town.