Task Force ID's Site for City Teen Center
While pending city council approval, officials say the facility could open as early as September of this year, and include entertainment and enrichment programs for area teens.
After reviewing several properties near Malden Center, a task force created by the Mayor's office recommended One Salem St. as a location for a proposed teen center that could be open as early as September, officials said Tuesday.
The 18-person task force, which included some Malden High School students, considered five facilities, including 22 Pleasant St., the first and second floor of 46-50 Pleasant St. and 379 Main St., but identified the Salem St. location as the most cost-effective for the city.
“The location is just marvelous,” task force chairperson Cathy MacMullin said during a press conference Tuesday. “The owner is looking forward to negotiating with the mayor's office.”
The proximity to both the high school and public transportation made the recommendation a natural choice for the city's 3,336 teens, she said.
The space is located in a prominent location on the corner of Salem and Ferry streets, where both streets meet Main Street. The storefront, across the street from Malden High School, has been empty for awhile. The last tenant was a bank.
MacMullin, who works for the YMCA and has coordinated 16 “Malden Teen Nights” at the facility said the number of participants have swelled to over 150 students a night.
The plan is pending approval by the city council, who will need to appropriate funds for rent, staff and other operation expenses at the facility.
While the report notes an unspecified amount of the plan's projected expenses are from one-time costs needed to open the center, it estimates a total budget of $149,930 for the 2012-2013 fiscal year, including a full-time staff member at the facility for $48,200 a year.
Two part-time staff members would be hired at $10,400 each. Rent at the facility would be just under $60,000 a year.
But Mayor Gary Christenson emphasized that the facility will also take responsibility for some of it's operating costs, via grants and other independent revenue streams – a unique budgeting model compared to other area city's teen centers.