SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Community leaders Friday broke ground on a project that will replace the Jackie Robinson Family YMCA building in Southeast San Diego with a larger facility that will offer services to more families.

The 50,000-square-foot replacement will have a state-of-the-art fitness center, gymnasium with two basketball courts, a multipurpose room, a childcare center and a technology center for teens. The first phase is expected to last up to a year and a half.

The center closed its doors in March to make way for the project, and the administrative offices were moved to 4902 Market St. for the duration of construction. Members are being referred to nearby facilities.

YMCA officials still are seeking funding for a second phase, which would include swimming pools.

"A new Jackie Robinson Family YMCA reinforces all of the great work the Y has invested in the southeastern San Diego community for 73 years,": said Executive Director Michael Brunker.

"It allows us to extend our reach to work tirelessly to nurture the potential of kids, improve health and well-being, and give back and support our neighbors,'' Brunker said. "We are very grateful to our donors, local businesses, volunteers, elected officials and the community at-large for helping to make this dream a reality."

About 200 people attended the event, including Assemblywomen Lorena Gonzalez and Shirley Weber, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Councilwoman Myrtle Cole, and Tom Seidler -- a member of the Padres ownership group.