Building Renovations Propel Mission

If you’ve been in our neighborhood lately, maybe you’ve noticed some changes. Last month, the exterior of our building was painted, giving it a much appreciated face lift, donated by PPG. In our front lobby, architectural and design plans from Luckett & Farley architecture firm line the walls. We at WaterStep are in the midst of planning the renovation of our home facility in Louisville.
Let’s back up a bit: WaterStep has always been an organization that aims to transform and reinvent itself.  In 2012, restricted by the space of a leased facility, an opportunity to move into a much larger facility appeared. For our mission, increased square footage correlates with an increase in our scope and ability to perform that mission.
We acquired this new opportunity in the form of a 36,000 square foot, 50 year old building that had been abandoned for 7 years at 625 Myrtle Street. It is a great space and is in significant need of basic renovation.
WaterStep has been very graciously awarded a $500,000.00 (1:1 match) grant from the James Graham Brown Foundation to help accomplish this building renovation project. In order for WaterStep to continue to deliver life-saving support and expand our global footprint, developing a secure foundation and facility is paramount.
This project has already been embraced by the Louisville business community. A phenomenal building committee representing over two dozen companies in the Louisville area, including Luckett & Farley, General Electric, Louisville Water Company, Messer Construction, PPG, Quality Stone, Kiel Thomson Company, Louisville Heating & Air, has come together to help with the design, plan, and construction involved in the renovation. This is where the matching part of the grant is crucial. Contributions to the building renovation, whether money, donated items, in-kind services, or volunteer time, all go towards to the matching portion of the grant.
To clarify, general donations to WaterStep do not go towards the building renovation, towards painting the building, towards building bathrooms. General donations still go to saving lives with safe water.
Having a fully functional facility will allow us to do a better job of saving lives with safe water.
The basic facility renovation details are as follows:
HVAC:  There is no air conditioning or heating is in the warehouse.  Indoor and outdoor temperatures follow each other.
Water School and Hand pump repair – Year round training: To accomplish year round training, the Hand Pump Platform is outside and needs to be enclosed.  Current class size is 15 people/month and WaterStep needs to increase to 30 people/month to adequately serve its mission.
Manufacturing:  To serve the mission with our manufactured products, WaterStep desires to convert space and develop a full time process, including staff, to produce these life saving products, like our M-100 and the Portable Emergency Disaster Unit.
Bathrooms:  Quantity of restroom facilities is inadequate for the plans outlined above.
Other Space:  20% of our building is not usable due to egress code issues.  Proper egresses need to be constructed.
With your gracious commitments, WaterStep can increase the scope of our mission of providing access to safe water to anyone, anywhere.

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