Senior Center Project

City Planning Engineering


(231) 922-4456

Project Timeline

Start: September 2023


A New Senior Center is on the Horizon

Check out this project's Story Map!

Next Steps

  • The Senior Center building has closed and access to indoor restrooms is no longer available.
  • Senior Center Network Programming has moved to the VFW, 3400 Veterans Drive, Traverse City, MI 49684, and will continue during the construction period.
  • Access to the racquet courts, outdoor restrooms, Senior Center Beach will continue through Labor Day Weekend. Access to the racquet courts and outdoor restrooms will no longer be available beginning September 5, 2023. The City will provide notification when access to the Senior Center beach is affected.
  • Preparation work at the site is anticipated in Mid-September.
  • A groundbreaking ceremony is slated for Thursday, September 14, 2023, at 3 pm.
  • Major construction to begin Monday, September 18, 2023.
  • The Senior Center Building is to be completed by December 31, 2024.
  • Additional amenities such as racquet courts, shuffleboard courts, etc. will begin construction in spring 2025.


In 2018, the City of Traverse City and Grand Traverse County formed an Ad Hoc Committee to determine future reconstruction of the Senior Center. The partners engaged local firm, Environment Architects, for professional services for design and construction of a new Senior Center.

In 2020, the project was estimated to cost $5.6 Million. In 2022, an Ad Hoc Committee was formed to discuss the future of the Senior Center and explore funding options.  These discussions included a local millage, capital campaigns, and grant funding. The preliminary estimate due to rising costs of construction and materials, has exceeded $10 Million.

The project saw a major boost in 2022 when a $7 Million allocation from the State of Michigan was provided.

The City has worked with Environment Architects since that time to refine design elements and issued a Request for Proposals on July 14, 2023.


 "The Senior Center is a gem in our community and these funds provide sustainability for a new Senior Center building and operational programming.  Providing opportunities for seniors to connect with one another and build relationships serves as a foundation to this community. We are grateful for these appropriated funds and look forward to a bright future at the Senior Center," says former Traverse City Mayor Lewis.


Proposed Project Elements

Square footage will increase from 5,780 to over 18,114 (including exterior spaces). The building will be oriented to the north to open park space and views of the public beach from Front Street, and will include exterior covered spaces to maximize the outdoor opportunities and the views along the shores of West Grand Traverse Bay. 

  • Building Orientation to Maximize Views
  • Increase Square Footage
  • Covered Drop Off
  • Covered Patio
  • Segmented Spaces
  • Green Roofs
  • Pervious pavement elements
  • Improved Access to the Beach
  • Restroom Access for Public Beach
  • Traffic Calming Elements
  • New Tennis/Pickleball Courts
  • Improved Shuffleboard Courts
  • Commercial Kitchen

Future Implementation

The goal of rebuilding the Senior Center will require planning for various project elements, some of which may be implemented at a later time due to funding constraints. Fortunately, initial planning has identified cost savings for certain elements, providing some relief in the budget.

  • Covered Drop Off
  • Tennis/Pickleball
  • Geothermal + Limited Snowmelt
  • Barlow Street Sidewalk
  • Provide Asphalt Shingles in lieu of Metal Standing Seam Roof
  • Green Roof
  • Pervious Pavers
  • Furnishings
  • Commercial Kitchen Equipment


Programmng Possibilities

With the new Senior Center there is an increased capacity for indoor and outdoor programming. The larger room sizes enable programming classes to be larger and offered more frequently.

  • Increased access of hot lunches provided by Meals on Wheels 
  • Multipurpose rooms for new expanded wellness programs and exercise 
  • Meeting spaces for skills learning, education and social gatherings




The project is meeting a number of goals and objectives that have been prioritized by the City. Specific features will provide a more sustainable future for all by contributing to the improvement to individual and public health, increasing more active lifestyles, cleaner air, improved water and soil quality, and less reliance on fossil fuels.

Decreased Fossil Fuel Reliance

The project goal is to implement building electrification and shift the movement away from fossil fuels, such as gas, and toward clean electricity.  

Improving Stormwater Management

Due to the current aging infrastructure, the project will improve stormwater management due to the use of pervious pavers, green roofs, and an improved stormwater infiltration system and collection system.


Energy efficient elements such as low flow flushing toilets that use less water, lighting, and windows will be incorporated.


 The total cost for all elements of the project is $10,035,499. Currently, approximately $8,100,000 of available funds have been identified, which include a commitment of City of Traverse City funds in the amount of $500,000 and a $7,000,000 allocation from the State of Michigan.

Total Estimated Project Costs


Total Estimated Project Funding


Total Project Funding Gap