The City of Loveland, the Boys & Girls Club of Larimer County, and other nonprofit partners plan to begin work toward a Comprehensive Childcare Campus pending City Council approval to purchase property at 2366 E. 1st St.
The $3.75 million building purchase is one of the first steps in the multi-year process. If approved, funding will come from City General Government Capital Expansion and Recreation Capital Expansion Fees.
The property, currently home to New Vision Charter School and the Boys & Girls Club of Larimer County could become a centralized campus for multiple nonprofit and governmental agencies to provide highly needed family services including affordable childcare, youth programming, and mental health.
Plans for the campus come after more than a year of collaboration to address a lack of affordable childcare available in Loveland. According to the Colorado Office of Early Childhood, the price of childcare has risen by 41% during the pandemic with families spending on average up to 20% of their salaries on the costs.
The City’s interest in acquiring the building stems from the larger childcare campus vision, the ability to co-locate with like-minded programs to expand its Small Fries Preschool and licensed summer day camps, and the opportunity to add Parks & Recreation administrative offices as the City grows. After learning that the Boys & Girls Club was also interested in the building, the two organizations have shown high interest in collaborating to move the campus concept forward.
“It is a win-win all around when the City can collaborate with others to improve opportunities for the people in our community,” said City of Loveland Parks & Recreation Director Elizabeth Kayl. “This project allows Parks & Recreation to expand our affordable childcare services while also driving City Strategic Plan initiatives forward by seeking community infrastructure investments that have a larger impact.”
If approved, the City would purchase the building this March and lease it back to New Vision through July 2023 when New Vision plans to move into a new building. As the lead campus organizer, the Boys & Girls Club would have the opportunity to purchase the building from the City once appropriate funding is secured and will continue leading operations.
“We are excited to have the opportunity to collaborate with the City of Loveland and other providers to help address the childcare crisis in our community,” said Kaycee Headrick, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Larimer County. “Now more than ever, youth and families need access to safe, high-quality, and affordable childcare and youth development services.”