The Sportsplex is set to get a major overhaul, but that can’t happen before extensive consultation with the Strathcona Gardens Commission so they don’t end up duplicating services. Photo by Mike Davies

Timeline moved up on major Sportsplex renovation

Consultations need to happen between city and SRD before design work can happen, however

The city will begin planning a major overhaul of the Sportsplex next year, but there are concerns by some council members that they could end up duplicating services with Strathcona Gardens – which is also currently undergoing a redesign – should communication between the city and the SRD not be increased.

During financial planning deliberations last week, $80,000 was set aside for the design plans for the approximately $3.9-million Sportsplex renovation project. The design work was scheduled to begin in 2022, but Coun. Larry Samson wanted it brought forward to next year.

Samson’s reasoning for pushing the timeline for the project forward was because the work will largely need to rely on grants from other levels of government, so getting the design work done as soon as possible will allow them to pursue those grants when they come available.

But Mayor Andy Adams said there needs to be a lot more collaboration between the city and the Strathcona Gardens Commission (SGC) at the SRD before he could support going ahead with detailed design work on the Sportsplex, “so that we are not duplicating services and getting less bang for our buck.”

Coun. Michele Babchuk backed Samson’s proposal for moving the project up the timeline, echoed the mayor’s concerns about collaboration with the SRD and added another reason they should start in on the Sportsplex upgrades as soon as possible: because “the Sportsplex is going to need some upgrading that is essential to its facility envelope, not just expanding the programming within it.”

The roof, for example, needs to be replaced. That work comes with a $700,000 price tag.

Coun. Charlie Cornfield asked general manager of corporate services and interim manager of parks, Ron Bowles, how long they could put off fixing the roof, to which Bowles simply replied, “the roof is at end of life,” and facilities manager Dave Morris said it’s on the books to be replaced in 2021.

“Well, we’ve gotta replace the roof anyway, so if we can incorporate the roof into that design it will give us another pot of money we can work with,” Cornfield said.

Coun. Ron Kerr, however, said there are already too many plans going on to add a major renovation to a city facility that far up in the timeline, and was the sole vote against the motion.

“We keep throwing these projects into our wish list with the expectation that there’s going to be funding for them,” Kerr said. “At the same time, we’re increasing expectation within the community that we’re going to be able to do them all, and I don’t think we can. At some point we need to prioritize and I think that takes more of a wholesome discussion.”

In the end, the $80,000 for detailed design work on the Sportsplex was brought up into next year’s budget on the condition that those discussions and collaborations with the SGC take place before the design work begins.

Just Posted

We Wai Kai and B.C. sign incremental Treaty Agreement, move a step closer to treaty

The We Wai Kai Nation and the Province of British Columbia have… Continue reading

B.C. salmon farm inspection deal reached with Indigenous people

Monitoring to determine if any Broughton region farms stay open

Compromise found on grocery store size in south Campbell River subdivision

Approved increase less than developer wanted, but will still allow for some flexibility

City of Campbell River looks to improve environmental protection during development

Changes to mapping environmentally sensitive areas and how permitting process works is under review

VIDEO: Grizzly bears fight along northern B.C. highway in rare footage

Cari McGillivray posted the head-turning video, shot near Stewart, B.C., to social media

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Police arrest B.C. phone scammer linked to illegal call centres in India

Person arrested in Burnaby here on a work visa, says police

Air Canada forced girl, 12, to remove hijab: civil rights group

The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations calling for change

Man from Winnipeg who was hiking alone found dead in Banff National Park

RCMP say the man was hiking alone on Mount Temple Thursday

Takaya, B.C.’s intriguing lone wolf, seen eating seal and howling away on Discovery Island

Fun facts about Takaya the wolf, like his a 36-hour tour around Chatham, Discovery Islands

Resident finds loaded shotgun inside a duffle bag in Kelowna alleyway

RCMP seized a loaded 12-gauge shotgun, ammunition, clothing and other items

Graffiti, calls and Snapchat: RCMP probe string of threats targeting Kamloops schools

There have been nine different threats made to four different schools in the city

Most Read