‘FRESH START’ Relocation FAQ

Relocation FAQ

April 15, 2019
Fort Collins Shambhala Meditation Center

  1. Why are we moving?​ Our landlord is expanding into our space. We must be out by December 31, 2019. Our target date for moving is Late-Summer, saving us approximately $2,500 each month in rent for 2019. (See # 11.)
  2. Where are we going?​ The best option is at ​525 W. Oak Street​ (Whitcomb and Oak),​ ​a converted​ ch​urch previously used by SummitStone Health Partners for many years. The building was recently purchased by Brinkman​,​ who is working with United Way to turn it into a non-profit center. Summitstone has relocated.
  3. What makes Oak Street so attractive? ​We maintain a presence in Downtown, we’ll have more visibility to the community, full accessibility (ramps to the main floor and lower level), and lots of free parking. Also, we expect our association with United Way to increase our connection with other non-profit organizations, many of whose employees and clients would benefit from meditation training.
  4. How much will it cost to move? ​Our remodeling costs are high, estimated at $283,000. Construction costs in Fort Collins are high, especially for smaller projects. Also, we will be demolishing one bathroom and building three new unisex, fully-accessible bathrooms.
  5. Why is our fundraising deadline May 30, 2019? ​United Way hopes to move in by the end of June. They want to know we are serious,​ ​or they will need to look for someone else to fill our space who would likely need less remodeling. We need to show them significant progress in raising remodeling funds.​ ​Our target is 70-80% of the money by end of April​;​ close to 100% by the end of​ ​May.
  6. How much money do we have now?​ As of April 16, 2019 we have secured over 62% of the total needed, about $177,000.
  7. What happens if we do not raise the remainder of the money? ​The Shambhala Center will need to close at the end of the year if we do not take advantage of the wonderful opportunity at Oak Street.
  8. Can we use volunteers to do some of the work?​ Members who had the skills to help us 11 years ago are not available today, and the amount and complexity of the work is greater this time. We expect to reuse our wood flooring and carpet squares.
  9. Will we use social media to help raise the money?​ We plan to use social media, but not until we are closer to our goal. Of course, we will accept any amount at any time to support our campaign. Some may want to increase their regular donation in the coming weeks to help us reach the goal.
  10.  Did we look at other sites?​ Our relocation team reviewed many for-sale and for-lease properties for over a year. All were far beyond our financial means. A non-profit must pay 50% down to secure a loan, and personally secure the loan by member assets.
  11. What will our rent be at Oak Street?​ Rent will be $0 per square foot for at least 10 years. Our only costs will be our share of maintenance, taxes and insurance. We now pay about $4,000 per month. At Oak Street our costs per month will be only about $1,400. This is an incredible deal!
  12. Can we borrow some of the money and pay it off from the savings at Oak Street? Possibly, but interest rates for small non-profit organizations like ours are very high (around 10% from Shambhala Credit Union) because it is considered an unsecured loan. Members would need to personally sign for a loan.
  13. Why is Oak Street rent-free?​ A Shambhala member, Charles Ervin, put the property under contract last year, with the hope of building a co-housing project that could also house Shambhala. His construction partner was going to be Brinkman. During his review of the property he negotiated the price down from $1.7 M to $1.1 M. The co-housing project ultimately was not viable. Brinkman took assignment of the contract and purchased the property. In return, Brinkman offered Shambhala a zero rent agreement for 10 years.
  14. Why is United Way moving? ​They are leaving Pine Street to allow Teaching Tree Early Childhood Learning Center​ t​o expand. United Way will be the master tenant at Oak Street, and Shambhala and other non-profits will sub-lease.
  15. What about the future of Shambhala USA? ​None of us can predict what will happen to Shambhala USA. It will hopefully emerge much stronger. Despite our situation, members say they definitely want a meditation center serving Northern Colorado. Our center (as well as Shambhala Mountain Center) is a critical resource: all of society greatly benefits as more people develop mindfulness meditation skills.
  16. More questions or suggestions?​ Call Rich Shannon at 970-481-4438, or Ann Reichhardt at 970-402-2570.
  17. How can I donate?​ EASILY! Click HERE

 

 

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