- The BlueCross Healthy Place at the Northwest Family YMCA in Nashville is now open. It is the first BlueCross Healthy Place in the Nashville area.
- The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation invested $6.4 million in the space, including $5.3 million to build it out and $1,060,000 in a maintenance fund.
- The space is open to all residents, regardless of YMCA membership status.
- To date, the BlueCross Foundation has invested $31.7 million in BlueCross Healthy Place projects across the state.
On Saturday, Jan. 22, representatives from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation joined staff from the Northwest Family YMCA, along with Nashville Mayor John Cooper, to celebrate the opening of the BlueCross Healthy Place at the Northwest Family YMCA. It is the first BlueCross Healthy Place in the Nashville area.
The YMCA applied for a BlueCross Healthy Place following a series of community assessments and dialog sessions it began in 2017. The goal was to understand the area’s needs and determine how to meet them, and the results indicated a desire for services and amenities for both children and senior citizens, as well as additional public recreation spaces.
“The YMCA is a place of connection for this area, and it seemed like a natural fit for us to help them build this space,” says Chelsea Johnson, director of the BlueCross Foundation. “This is a fantastic community, and we know the BlueCross Healthy Place will help bring residents together for years to come.”
The BlueCross Foundation has invested $6.4 million in the project, including $5.3 million to build out the space and $1,060,000 for a maintenance fund. To date, the foundation has invested $31.7 million in BlueCross Healthy Place projects across the state.
Johari Matthews, executive director of the Northwest Family YMCA, knows that the addition means an exciting new chapter for her organization. “For the last few years, we have been trying to figure out how to grow our YMCA and continue the legacy it has in the community,” she says. “The BlueCross Healthy Place was the perfect way for us to meet the needs of both the Bordeaux area and our facility.”
Mayor Cooper added, “This is the Y that created the YMCA Black Achievers Program. This is the place North Nashville and Bordeaux turned to early in the pandemic for pop-up COVID testing. The Northwest Y is home to a backpack drive, every summer. And this is the Y that the BlueCross Foundation has chosen as a partner for a new space, where everyone will always be welcome. And we need as many spaces like that as possible – in Nashville and across our country.”
Something for everyone
The new BlueCross Healthy Place has is open to all residents regardless of YMCA membership status and has a variety of features for community members of all ages and abilities.
Amenities in the space include:
- Accessible play areas for children ages 2-5 and 5-12 with ramp access, ground-level play and a soft rubber safety surface
- Challenge course
- Splash zone
- Basketball/pickleball courts
- Multipurpose field
- Walking path
- Adult fitness equipment
- Shade structures