NEW BRITAIN – Shifting of staff and clients to other city locations has begun as Community Mental Health Affiliates looks ahead to its definitive move downtown.
Ray Gorman, president and chief executive officer of CMHA, told The Herald on Wednesday that relocating services from the agency’s Winthrop Street office, currently on the market, to its John Downey Drive site is already underway.
Additionally, operations at the CMHA office at 125 Whiting St. are expected to cease by the end of May, Gorman confirmed.
“As part of our strategic plan to consolidate services at the 227 Main St. site, we are exiting existing leases and consolidating operations,” Gorman said.
CMHA in December purchased the former Mitch’s Place retail building opposite Central Park for $549,000 with the ultimate goal of housing under one roof several outpatient programs and administrative offices. The organization has given itself an 18- to 36-month window to complete renovations and upgrades, funded through a capital campaign and potential grants and other sources, Gorman said.
From 125 to 150 employees are expected to staff the medical building, including physicians, nurses, social workers and administrators.
CMHA operates clinical and family services and residential, outpatient and intensive programs at nearly a dozen sites throughout New Britain.
The not-for-profit’s lease on the 3-story office building at 55 Winthrop St. expires in two months. The site, owned for seven years by CMHANB LLC, is located just west of the Arch Street intersection and has been on the market since March for $650,000. Gorman said the building “served us very well” as administrative offices and an adult outpatient clinic.
The John Downey Drive office, which once served as the headquarters of the Connecticut Lottery Corp., is one of the buildings expected to accommodate staff and clients until the relocation downtown.
CMHA continues to tend to maintenance at the former Main Street retail building. Additionally, a rotating artwork display organized by the New Britain Artists’ Cooperative has adorned the main entrance since last month.
Christopher Fortier can be reached at 860-801-5063 or firstname.lastname@example.org.