City Gospel Mission celebrates new location in Queensgate
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley speaks at the unveiling of City Gospel Mission's new facility. /FOX19NOW Gordon Graham
QUEENSGATE, OH (FOX19) -
The public got its first peek today at City Gospel Mission's new facilities now under construction in Queensgate.
When completed the facility will allow the faith-based agency to provide many more services to the homeless.
The 22,000 square foot building has actually been under construction since January under the auspices of 3CDC because City Gospel Mission was still dealing with some deed restriction issues. City Gospel's Executive Director Roger Howell says however, there was plenty of reason to celebrate today.
"The ceremony today is because City Gospel has resolved all those issues and we are now 100% into that project."
City Gospel's Vice-President for Development Paul Spencer says the project includes a complete renovation of the old Trane air conditioning and heating building where much needed services will be provided.
"This building will house all the people who are coming off the streets and needing a bed for the night."
As he took reporters on a tour upstairs, Spencer pointed out the actual sleeping quarters.
"We will have six people to eight people in the dormitory style living that we have. We'll be able to triple our bed space up here."
The tract of land was once part of the old Crosley field, the original home of the Reds. Rick Walls with the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum says it's not being forgotten.
"What we're going to be able to do at this site by putting up a foul pole, the light tower - this was the home of the first professional night game. We're going to be able to do so many things like put the bases in the ground within the building as well as on the outside. I think fans that come down here now are going to be able to see a great commemorative site for Crosley field."
City Gospel began planning for a new home more than 10 years ago because Howell says they've outgrown their current location on Elm Street.
"We are maxed out every night and every breakfast. We're at capacity or 95-percent capacity. We're packed every night sleeping so yeah, we need more space."
If all goes as planned, the building be renovated will be completed in January with construction on the new building finished in April. A grand opening is planned for May.
City Gospel Mission and 3CDC have been partnering with several organization to raise funds and to get through the tedious approval process to make the new facility a reality.