The former Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) complex will become a mega mosque complete with a segregated prayer area for second-class Muslims: women. They’ll be teaching young Muslims about the superiority of Muslim men very early too as there will be segregated boys and girls areas.
There’s only one reason they need a bigger mosque – because the Islamic Society is expecting thousands more Muslims in the area in the near future. The elderly citizens interviewed for this article are quite oblivious. via New mosque planned at former Daytona YMCA building | News-JournalOnline.com
DAYTONA BEACH — The vacant YMCA building in the north central area of the city, a beloved and bustling hub of activity for more than 30 years before it went dormant close to a decade ago, is poised to become a mosque.
The building’s owner, The Islamic Center of Daytona Beach, now located in a 4,500-square-foot building in the Midtown neighborhood east of Nova Road, plans to spread its wings in the 32,000-square-foot YMCA complex in the Derbyshire neighborhood. The vision is to create a much larger place of prayer, school, daycare center, thrift store, recreation center and Islamic heritage museum.
While some Derbyshire residents still mourn the YMCA’s decision to move out of the 43-year-old building located next to a heavily used park, they seem to be welcoming their new neighbor.
“It will be a needed addition to Daytona Beach,” said Derbyshire resident Norma Bland. “Islam is about love.”
Bland, who said she embraces “all faiths because we praise the same God,” said she’s hearing only positive things from her neighbors, as is Derbyshire resident and City Commissioner Patrick Henry.
“I think it’s a good idea,” said the 55-year-old Henry, who has lived in Derbyshire since 1969 and remembers how much people loved using the old YMCA, the first in Volusia County. “The Muslim community has been an excellent friend. They’ve allowed us to use the fields around the (former YMCA) building, and that’s an indication to me they’ll be a good neighbor.”
The transformation of the once-state-of-the-art YMCA into a mosque could begin next year. Last month the city’s Planning Board members unanimously supported a request to rezone the 6.5-acre site to a planned development. On Nov. 4 and Nov. 18, Daytona Beach city commissioners will take their preliminary and final votes on the rezoning.
If the rezoning is OK’d, the mosque developers will then need to get a site plan approved and obtain building permits.
The Islamic Center of Daytona Beach bought its Midtown property at 347 S. Keech St. in 1985 for $30,000, according to Volusia County property appraiser records. The mosque’s one-story building went up in 1988, records indicate.
The Islamic Center of Daytona Beach, Inc., purchased the YMCA building at 825 Derbyshire Road in July 2007 for $1.15 million, records show. At some point the organization also purchased property in a nearby cemetery at 1300 Mason Ave.
Who was buying real estate during the greatest economic crash since the Great Depression? Who had the money? Who was willing to take the risk? Where did the mosque get it’s money?
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