Lawrence’s Alford-Clarke VFW Post 852, which has had its home at 138 Ala. since 1965, is planning a move.
The post plans to be “turning dirt” on a vacant lot at 2645 Haskell Ave. by Oct. 1, said Vern Russell, VFW quartermaster.
Plans for the move have been about a year and a half in the making, Russell said. A committee made the decision to opt for rebuilding the post rather than renovating the 57-year-old structure northeast of Lawrence Memorial Hospital.
“Like any old building, it’s showing its age,” Russell said. The Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center is in the process of purchasing the property to build more office space there, create a community wellness center and a nature area that could take advantage of the large pond on the site, said Bert Nash spokeswoman Patricia Roach Smith.
The post hasn’t yet filed detailed plans for the new building, but a concept plan shows about a 5,700 square-foot building that includes a kitchen, a bar and a gathering area.
The move is contingent on approval from the City Commission for a rezoning request — up for approval at Tuesday’s commission meeting — for the Haskell Avenue property that is on vacant industrial ground, just north of 27th and Haskell near Chaney Inc.’s facility.
The VFW is seeking to have the 1.7 acre site rezoned from heavy industrial to light industrial.
Post Commander Fred Shockey III told the Journal-World in May that he hoped to move to the location between March and May of 2013.