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Coldstream, rural areas bow out of Vernon’s active living centre project

Coldstream and RDNO electoral area directors have declined an invitation to participate in the project
A conceptual design of Vernon’s Active Living Centre, which will go to a referendum Oct. 15, 2022. (Rendering)

Vernon has lost out on key support from its neighbours for its active living centre project.

Coldstream Mayor Jim Garlick, Electoral Area B director Bob Fleming and Electoral Area C director Amanda Shatzko released a joint statement Wednesday, April 6, saying the City of Vernon asked them to consider getting involved in the project.

In response, the officials say they won’t be participating in the project at this time.

“We are not opposed to this project in principle as we agree there is a legitimate community need for a new pool and additional recreational spaces. However, we do not have the confidence to move forward at this time based on the information that has been provided,” the statement reads.

Plans for the active living centre include a swimming pool and double gymnasium with multiple sports courts, a walking track and a fitness centre, among other amenities, which will be built at the former Kin Race Track site beside Kal Tire Place.

The project’s estimated cost is between $112- and $121 million, which is 25 to 35 per cent higher than the original estimation due to inflation, according to comminications manager Christy Poirier.

Timing, market volatility, accuracy of costing, contractual obligations, ownership structure and lack of detailed information were all factors that led to the decision to stay away from the project for now.

“Given these unknowns, it is not prudent for our jurisdictions to participate at this time,” the officials said.

The officials encouraged the City of Vernon to conduct a referendum if they wish to proceed. The city has previously said there will be a referendum on the project in conjunction with the municipal election on Oct. 15, 2022. The referendum would ask voters to borrow up to $90 million for construction of the facility.

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Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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