Regional district to sink $477,950 into Gardens this year

Strathcona Gardens is forecasted to be the regional district’s biggest capital expense this year

Strathcona Gardens is forecasted to be the regional district’s biggest capital expense this year.

An estimated $477,950 worth of improvements will be going into the recreation facility.

Dawn Christenson, the regional district’s finance manager, presented the numbers to the board at its July 24 meeting as part of a second quarter financial update.

Christenson said the regional district has spent $63,771 to date on Strathcona Gardens on items such as the energy loop exchange which transfers waste heat from the ammonia compressor room – used to make ice for the two arenas – to heat the main and leisure pools; and a new wiggle bridge for the pool. Strathcona Gardens also spent $11,430 to purchase a 2010 Dodge Ram from the regional district’s general administration fleet. But that’s not all. Christenson said there are a few other projects still on the horizon.

“The vestibule, that’s in the $100,000 range,” Christenson said. “The new ice surfacer is in the range of $120,000 as our ice resurfacer is actually on its last legs.”

The front vestibule is aimed at reducing heating costs at Strathcona Gardens and will complement the new energy loop. The vestibule is essentially a second set of front doors expected to provide energy savings by reducing the amount of heat escaping from the building to the outside.

Also on the go is a new electronic sign. The regional district has approved spending $45,000 to replace the Dogwood Street sign with a multi-colour 25 millimetre LED message centre. Lorne Parker, manager of operations, said in the spring that the current sign, which stands on the corner of Dogwood and Pinecrest, is nearing the end of its life.

“The existing sign no longer provides sufficient advertising for the many programs and events that are offered at the facility,” Parker said.

The current sign is manually changed once a week and highlights two events each week. The new reader board will allow staff to change the messaging electronically and advertise several different events, programs, tournaments and schedules.