Huge community center opens in North Phila.

NORTH PHILADELPHIA - November 1, 2010

The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center is one of the largest, most comprehensive community centers on the East Coast.

The $132 million facility features a state-of-the-art cardio fitness center and a three-pool aquatic center.

The 130,000 square foot facility is the result of 10 years of planning.

It's expected to serve about 1,000 people a day through fitness, educational, performing arts and horticultural programs.

The Kroc Center Administrator, Major Tim Lyle, says that about half of the price tag was funded by McDonald's founder, Ray and Joan Kroc.

Lyle said they are fulfilling the Kroc's mission "to build a world class community center in underserved communities across the country."

One woman was blown away by the new facility.

"My first reaction is 'wow!' We so need a community center where our children can play safely," said Kimberly Felder.

The center is open seven days a week to anyone in the community. Memberships start at $39 per month.

A similar center is expected to be built in Camden, N.J. in the next few years.

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