Salem Family YMCA Signs Historic Agreement with First Presbyterian Church and Ike Box

Posted on June 18, 2020

(Salem, OR) June 17, 2020 – The Salem Family YMCA is pleased to announce that they have closed on a deal to keep the Ike Box at its current location and purchase the Salem First Presbyterian Church parking lot. The lot, located at the corner of Court and Cottage, will serve as the location for a new veteran housing project.

“This is a great result for all us,” said Salem Family YMCA CEO Sam Carroll. “The Ike Box is beloved in downtown Salem, and we are happy to see it stay in its current location. Also, the new YMCA building will continue with construction as planned. The veteran housing building will be an important resource for Salem.”

Reaching this point was complicated. Initially, it was thought that to accommodate the development, the Ike Box, a coffee shop operated by Isaac’s Room, would have to move its building from Cottage and Chemeketa, to a new location across the street. Then, Salem First Presbyterian Church came forward with an offer to sell its adjacent parking lot to the YMCA for their veteran housing project allowing the Ike Box to remain in place.

“This commercial real estate transaction was nothing short of miraculous for our community at large,” said Joshua Kay, YMCA board member and owner of First Commercial Real Estate Services. “The net result is a true win-win-win for the Ike Box, First Presbyterian Church, and the Salem Family YMCA. First Commercial Real Estate Services was privileged to work on behalf of the YMCA in a pro-bono capacity to structure the deal and manage land use proceedings. By preserving the Ike Box and adding the Veterans’ housing facility, the YMCA continues its longstanding tradition of providing housing to those who need it most.”

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About the YMCA: The Y originally opened on the south side of State Street in May of 1892, but quickly grew and needed expansion. It moved to the Court/Cottage location in 1926, and the Youth Development addition was completed in 1956. The Y has continually provided for the youth of Salem childcare to basic health and fitness programs. The Y serves over 600 of Salem’s children every day at 22 different sites. It also provides for over 5,000 of its member’s health and fitness needs at its downtown location. 

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