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A new home

Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford talks with Hassie Green about plans to construct a new nutrition center on property near the new Troy Library. (Photo/Jaine Treadwell)

Plan will save Collier House, give nutrition center new home

A location site for the new Troy nutrition center as been agreed upon by all parties concerned.

That’s a turn around from a couple of weeks ago when the Troy City Council voted to remove the Collier house on Elm Street to make way for the new nutrition center.

Both Hassie Green, manager of the Lillian D. Green Nutrition Center, and Janet Motes, director of the Colley Senior Complex, expressed concerns about the loss of green space if the new nutrition center was built on the Collier house site. There was also concern among seniors about taking down the house that is being used for a variety of senior activities.

“Anytime the parties involved in a situation are not satisfied, we try to find a solution that is agreeable to everyone,” said Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford. “We have found a solution that is agreeable to all involved. I’m very excited to announce that the city’s new nutrition center will be built on city property within the new library complex.”

The new nutrition center will face the entrance to the new library, with its back toward Academy Street.

“The city council is in full agreement with this location and both directors are happy and excited about the location,” Lunsford said. “Having the nutrition center at this location will provide immediate access to the library for our seniors who participate in the nutrition program and its activities and it will enhance the area.”

Lunsford said the architects will work together so that the library and nutrition center complement each other and to design a parking area that will accommodate both.

“This is an ideal location for the nutrition center and it’s a win-win situation all around,” Lunsford said. “The nutrition center will have a new facility with green space. The Colley Senior Complex will have additional space that they really need. The Collier house will still be a part of the senior complex and there will be plenty of green space for the its outdoor programs and activities.”

Green said that she is very happy that a home has been found for the nutrition center.

“We’ll have a brand new facility in a wonderful location,” she said. “I’ve got to be pleased. I feel so honored to be the center manager and for us to be endowed with this new facility.

“It will allow us to expand our activities to meet the changing needs of our increasing senior population. We’ll be able to continue to offer our seniors affordable, nutritious meals in a serene, hospitable environment dedicated to the enrichment of their nutritional, social, emotional and educational needs.

“On behalf of our seniors, I want to thank all of those who have made this project a reality and a special thanks to our mayor who has a special place in his heart for the seniors of Pike County.”

Motes said that she, too, is pleased and appreciative of the efforts of all those who have made it possible to expand and enhance the senior programs.

“I’m really thrilled with the results,” she said. “Everybody got what they wanted. I wanted to make sure that the senior programs were not too far apart and the nutrition center will be just down the street.

“When the nutrition center moves to its new facility that will give us about 5000-square-feet of additional space that we really need, especially in the exercise classes. We’ll have a commercial kitchen that will allow us to offer baking and cooking classes. We already use the kitchen for our singles’ socials once a month, for our veterans programs and other special events.”

Motes said that she, the staff and board are in the process of reviewing the programs offered at the Complex.

“We’re looking at what we can add and what we can expand,” she said. “The Collier house annex is an important part of our programming. Our art guild meets there and it’s also a place where artists can go to paint on their own or collectively. We are proud that it will still be available and, of course, we love the green space. We’re just very happy with the way things have turned out.”

The Troy Public Library and the new nutrition center will share common ground.

William White, Troy Public Library director, said he and the library board are extremely excited to have the city’s nutrition center as a close neighbor.

“Having the nutrition center at this location will help the library serve another demographic,” he said. “We will be more accessible to our seniors from their new location and we will complement each other. Having the nutrition center and the library in the same area will put a focus on the hill and tie into the downtown area.

“With the library and the nutrition center in the same location, we are promoting a sense of community. A unification of sorts and it can only strengthen our community. It’s a win-win situation for everybody.”