It housed many a party, many a gathering, many a meeting.
And, oh, the stories the walls of the Coldstream Women’s Institute Hall on Kalamalka Road could have told.
But, alas, the 88-year-old building was giving way to age and, earlier this month, fell victim to the wrecking ball, soon to be replaced by a new structure that will also include a child care facility.
“The District of Coldstream received $5.3 million in grant funding to build a new child care facility and community hall,” said Coldstream chief administrative officer Trevor Seibel. “Council has put money aside for a replacement hall so 90 per cent of the costs come from grants and 10 per cent is based on funds accumulated in a hall replacement reserve.
“This will make a fairly significant impact to central Coldstream, and the new facility should leave a legacy for the next 90 years.”
The district announced exactly one year ago Thursday – Sept. 23, 2020 – that redevelopment of the Coldstream Town Centre would take a major step forward with the creation of 84 new child care spaces and the replacement of the Women’s Institute Hall, which opened in 1933.
The new community hall replaces the W.I. Hall and the child care facility will be built on adjacent vacant land. A total of 24 infant/toddler spaces, 25 spaces for children aged three to kindergarten, 10 pre-school spaces and 25 spaces for school-aged kids will be available in the new facility.
Maven Lane will operate the child care facility on behalf of the district.
“The child care spaces in the new Coldstream facility will provide much-needed support to families in our community as they return to work and school,” said Coldstream Mayor Jim Garlick a year ago. “The new Coldstream facility is centrally located, with an elementary school across the street, accessible and will be an important part of the revitalization of our Town Centre area.”
The old hall had not been used since March 2020 when things were shut down due to COVID-19. Groups who had been using the hall prior made other arrangements.
The project is expected to go to tender in the near future, and if things go smoothly, it’s hoped the new hall and child care facility will be open by the fall of 2022.