Construction on the North Valley Gymnastics Society’s new home in the old Vernon RV building on 31st Street, beside Chasers Bottle Depot, has been underway for months. The club hopes to move into its new home at the end of May, and has asked for $225,000 in funding support. (Morning Star file photo)

City flips for gymnastics request

Vernon supports in principle request for $225,000 from local club toward new building

North Valley Gymnastics Society has received a perfect score of seven from the City of Vernon.

Mayor and council gave unanimous support in principle, based on a motion made by Coun. Catherine Lord, to provide the society with $225,000 towards the costs of renovating its new facility on 31st Street near Chasers Bottle Depot.

“It’s subject to taking this support back to GVAC (Greater Vernon Advisory Committee) and getting buy-ins (monetary support) from GVAC members.”

Lord said because the society falls under Greater Vernon recreation, the whole of Greater Vernon should support the request.

“It’s in the hands of the city but (electoral) areas B and C and Coldstream also give monetary support to recreation,” said Lord. “They contribute toward that function; they should contribute to this as well, It’s part of it.”

The society originally approached GVAC in February with a request for $450,000, but scaled that back to $225,000 when GVAC put things in the hands of the city.

RELATED: City handed gymnastics funding request

The club, founded in 1993, has never had its own permanent home.

It has been leasing a 5,700-square-foot facility on 45th Avenue for the past five years, but spokesperson Paul Williamson said the leased space is not adequate with many drawbacks that affect the club’s programming and ability to grow.

The current club membership sits at 470 and draws students from Lumby, Armstrong, Enderby and Edgewood. The club facility is also used by organizations like Kindale, Vernon School District, homeschool programs, special needs adult’s day program, Silver Star Freestyle Ski Club and cheerleader groups.

The new facility, the former Vernon RV building, will be an 8,500-square-foot facility featuring a main gym, pre-school gym, viewing area, office, foyer, washroom and coach’s room.

The club hopes to move into its new home May 31.

“It’s 80 per cent complete,” said Williamson, delighted with the city’s support. “We’re happy with the meeting and the city’s motion to support in principle. Going back to GVAC is another step in the process. We’re getting there.”

Rising construction costs have gone above what the club had budgeted.

Lord’s motion will now go to GVAC for directors to consider. If they approve, the request will move to the Regional District of North Okanagan board for consideration.



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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Construction on the North Valley Gymnastics Society’s new home in the old Vernon RV building on 31st Street, beside Chasers Bottle Depot, has been underway for months. The club hopes to move into its new home at the end of May, and has asked for $225,000 in funding support. (Morning Star file photo)

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