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'It's like a jumpstart': Gary, Indiana gets $30 million for new YMCA, heath and employment centers

Gary, Indiana gets $30 million for new YMCA, heath and employment centers
Gary, Indiana gets $30 million for new YMCA, heath and employment centers 01:59

GARY, Ind. (CBS) -- The city of Gary is pushing for a comeback story in one of its neighborhoods, and just picked up a $20 million assist.

CBS 2's Tim McNicholas on Wednesday showed us the plan that has neighbors cheering.

When it comes to the boards and the blight in the Tolleston neighborhood, there is a consensus.

"A lot of residents have left or died off," said resident Gwendolyn Moss. "I love the neighborhood. It's home. I've seen it devolve."

"We love the area, but we don't like the way the area has changed," said resident Gloria Billingsley.

"We're striving to come back,"  noted resident Robert Harris.

The neighborhood was once home to many U.S. Steel employees and their families back when the company employed tens of thousands in Gary.

Now, the city hopes a $30 million plan on this property can help bring the area back to glory.

"It's like a jumpstart, if you will," said Gary Mayor Jerome Prince

Mayor Prince said the plan is to add a YMCA -- complete with a pool and gym -- as well as a health care facility run by Methodist Hospitals and Goodwill Employment Services to help people find jobs.

"We believe because of our geographic position and the assets. We already have that. Gary still is a gem and an opportunity that's just waiting to happen," Prince said.

The plan is to build all that around the Boys and Girls Club, which is already on the property and will stay here. The city just picked up a $10 million grant for the project from the State of Indiana and a $10 million donation from Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation.

"The adjacent property values go over time, its very attractive for residential growth because of the amenity that is there," said Bill Hanna of the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation.

The mayor says Gary City Council is already behind the project and he expects them to give it the green light. If so, construction could be done in about two years. For the people of the Tolleston neighborhood, that day can't come soon enough. 

"Yes!" said Billingsley. "I'm excited about it!"

Gary will also invest $10 million into the project, bringing the total amount to $30 million. 

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