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updated: 10/18/2013 5:34 AM

Gurnee Park District to convert old Gold's Gym into FitNation

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  • The Gurnee Park District is turning a former Gold's Gym into a new facility called FitNation. It will open Nov. 6.

      The Gurnee Park District is turning a former Gold's Gym into a new facility called FitNation. It will open Nov. 6.
    Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

 
 

The Gurnee Park District is turning a former Gold's Gym into a new facility called FitNation.

The park district purchased the 75,000-square-foot gym, which is just east of the Tri-State Tollway at 1655 Nations Drive, for $9.1 million. Officials announced the deal this spring and finalized the purchase Tuesday.

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"We are so excited to bring our recreational expertise to this facility," Park District Executive Director Susie Kuruvilla said in a news release. "It is our vision to make this new facility the cornerstone for health and wellness in our community and beyond."

To prepare for a Nov. 6 opening, the fitness areas of the facility will be closed through Nov. 5. Cleaning and repairs will be completed during that time.

Other areas of the facility, such as independent retail spaces and a membership desk, will remain open to the public during the closure.

The park district borrowed $8.5 million to pay for most of the purchase. An additional $2 million, part of which will cover facility upgrades, will be borrowed next year to secure lower interest rates for the project.

A tax-rate increase won't be necessary to cover the loan and interest, officials have said.

Parks officials were first approached about purchasing the gym in 2012 after the building went into foreclosure.

By buying the gym, parks officials add an indoor swimming pool, saunas and group exercise rooms to the district's offerings. Retail spaces will be converted into rooms for recreational programs after leases expire or other arrangements are made.

Much of the Gold's Gym staff has been retained and will be retrained to follow park district policies and standards, officials said.

The Gold's Gym opened in 1999. The company had announced plans to close the site ahead of the park district purchase.

Current park district fitness patrons will have access to the new facility. Introductory membership rates will be offered to former Gold's Gym customers or anyone else who isn't yet a park district fitness member.

A website for the revamped gym has been launched at fitnationgurnee.com.

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