STAUNTON, VA -- The Staunton-Augusta YMCA broke ground on a 25,000-square-foot expansion project earlier this month.

The faltering economy actually worked in the Y’s favor on the project, officials told The News Leader.

The $3.9 million project was $800,000 cheaper than originally estimated, Morris Peltz, the Y’s executive director, told the newspaper.

“About two to three years ago, we estimated it would be $4.7 million, but due to the changes in the economy, we are now looking at a projected $3.9 million," said Peltz. “With steel prices and other building material down, that is one of the reasons we got a very good deal on this."

The expansion will bring the Y’s building to 75,000 square feet and will include a new full-sized gymnasium, a fitness center with expanded equipment offerings, an aerobics studio and a child watch area.

The Staunton-Augusta Y hosts approximately 6,000 members.