Out with the old – In with the new

He may be covering other major Central Florida news events, but journalist and storyteller Dan Beckmann has the Coalition’s Men’s Service Center construction on his mind.  And are we glad!  Picking up from his last update, his latest post continues to track our progress, as well as what it means to clients and neighbors alike. 

A strong foundation is taking shape at Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida. Concrete footers have now been poured along the north side of the property – making way for the walls that will soon reach skyward at the new Men’s Service Center (MSC).

“I’m excited. I can’t wait until [the MSC] is up. I want to be in it. There’ll be more services – services that I need,” says resident Glen J.

Soon, the old driveway, which has served as the Coalition’s main entrance, will have to come up as workers relocate pipe for storm water management, sewer, electrical, and water utilities.

As neighbors continue to keep a watchful eye on advancements, a handful of residents in the current Men’s Pavilion gather together for a few moments each day to watch the activities like a reality TV show. “I see progress – slowly, but surely.  It’s relaxing to watch. I used to do this, so it reminds me of my younger days,” says resident Bensor R.

As construction continues to move forward, new on-site traffic patterns will come into use. The new entry points will affect pedestrians, emergency vehicles, vendors, Coalition staff and visitors, such as the great people who bring in donations.  For the next few months, all authorized vehicles will enter and exit through Parramore Avenue.

As each new phase of construction is completed, ushering in the next, the eagerness grows for the new era.  “You know, I’m watching and thinking how exciting this all is. It’s good to see it come up, step by step.  It’s a good foundation, it’s something we need,” says resident George H.