After years of planning and fundraising, the Salvation Army Harrisburg Capital City Region said it plans to break ground Monday on a much-anticipated $12 million regional headquarters.
The 38,700-square-foot facility at 506 S. 29th St. in Harrisburg will be more than double the size of the organization’s existing headquarters at 1122 Green St., its home since 1954.
The nonprofit purchased the seven-acre site for $1.25 million in 2015 and began a capital campaign called “Transforming Lives Building Legacies.”
Construction on the new facility is expected to take about a year.
Last summer, the Salvation Army demolished what was formerly a Weis Markets store and fenced the site in preparation for construction of the new facility. It will include a chapel, multi-purpose room, commercial kitchen, choice shopping food pantry, a family services suite with private intake offices, warehouse and emergency disaster garage.
“Almost 10 years ago, we initiated a comprehensive program study to really understand both current and emerging community needs and how the Salvation Army could address those needs through our programs, services and facilities,” Major John Griner, Harrisburg Corps Officer, said in a statement.
The new site will include a multi-use service and worship center, including an education wing with classrooms for summer, afterschool and pre-K programs for children, and job readiness programs for adults. A nutrition education teaching kitchen, indoor gymnasium and outdoor green space for playgrounds and recreation areas will serve both youth and family programs.
“We have been working very hard to align our programs to meet community needs such as youth education, adult self-sufficiency mentoring, health and wellness with services such as a choice shopping food pantry and nutrition education,” Jenny Gallagher Blom, director of programs and operations for the Salvation Army Harrisburg, said in a statement.
More than 75 local individuals, businesses and foundations contributed to the Salvation Army’s capital campaign. The organization has received a mix of funds, including public grants from the Pennsylvania Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, Impact Harrisburg and a Dauphin County Local Share Municipal grant.
Community First Fund, a Lancaster nonprofit, helped close the funding gap for the project with a $10 million tax credit allocation. The tax credits come from the New Markets Tax Credit program operated by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund.
The fund allocates tax credits to local community development entities, like Community First.
“We selected this project because the Salvation Army provides vital services to those that need it most. The programs they offer are critical to eliminating poverty and advancing opportunity,” Dan Betancourt, CEO of Community First Fund, said in a statement.
The Harrisburg Salvation Army has been providing human services and education programs for children, individuals and families within Dauphin, Cumberland and Perry Counties since 1885.
Harrisburg-based Pyramid Construction Services Inc. is overseeing construction.