To help further its mission of promoting volunteerism and developing women, the Junior League of Austin is breaking ground Thursday on a new 48,000-square-foot facility in Northwest Austin.

The facility—dubbed the Community Impact Center, which has no affiliation with Community Impact Newspaper—will allow the nonprofit to grow its programs.

The process to build the center began eight years ago when the organization bought 10 acres of land at 8501 Bluffstone Cove, Austin, off Loop 360. The new facility will be almost twice as large as its existing 26,000-square-foot space at 5416 Parkcrest Drive, Ste. 100, Austin, near RM 2222 and MoPac.

“We have just outgrown our facility,” said Julie Hall, the 2018 president for the Junior League of Austin. “All of our members can’t fit into one location. We can’t expand any of our existing programs because of space.”

Features of the new two-story Community Impact Center will include a signature program room and space to expand its Food in Tummies program as well as a pollinator garden. The facility will also be available to the community to rent for events.

Construction will take about 18 months and wrap up in late 2019.

“We really hope that even though the name Junior League is on it that it really is a community building,” Hall said.

The Junior League of Austin is one of 291 junior leagues worldwide. The Austin chapter, which celebrates its 85th anniversary in 2019, is the fifth-largest, Hall said.

The organization has invested 160,000 volunteer hours and $815,000 back into the community by supporting 30 nonprofits each year. The league also has 2,500 active members.

“People would be surprised to know over 80 percent of women have full-time jobs,” she said. “The old-school theory is they are ladies who lunch, but most also manage a family. Our goal is to get as diverse as the city is.”

Hall said the organization does not have any membership requirements and welcomes anyone who values the league’s mission.

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