To help voters learn about the proposed project and the impact for taxpayers, Greater Vernon Recreation Services is hosting a number of open houses on the Active Living Centre referendum.
Staff are attending several community events with pop-up information booths and will be on hand at some upcoming open houses ahead of the Oct. 15 referendum in conjunction with the general local election.
The open houses and information booths give members of the public an opportunity to review material with staff, see conceptual drawings, ask questions, and receive answers in real time before they make their mark on the borrowing of up to $121 million for the centre.
“We encourage all Vernon residents to join us at any of the upcoming open houses or visit the information booth if they see us at a community event,” said Doug Ross, recreation services director. “The Active Living Centre referendum is a community-based decision and every voice matters. Your vote is your voice.”
Since the original list of community events was distributed, a number of open houses have been added to the schedule, including:
• Sept. 21, Vernon Secondary School, 5-7 p.m.
• Sept. 28, Seaton Secondary School, 5-7 p.m.
• Oct. 12, Vernon Recreation Centre, 5-8 p.m.
The proposed facility includes a double gymnasium with multiple sport courts; an 80-station fitness centre; a 150-metre synthetic walking/running track; and multi-purpose activity and program spaces, as well as a new aquatic centre that features a 50m pool; leisure pool; hot tubs; sauna and steam room.
It will be located at the newly designated Kin Race Track Athletic Park, near Kal Tire Place on 43rd Avenue.
The lands will be developed as a year-round outdoor athletic park and will include: outdoor sports fields; indoor and outdoor ice surfaces; recreational trails; a dog park; and natural wetland trails.
Additionally, a portion of the land has been designated for the construction of a new indoor recreation facility – the Active Living Centre. If approved by voters, the facility will be built at the south end of the park, near Kal Tire Place.
The Kin Race Track Athletic Park and the Active Living Centre are two separate projects. The planning and development process of the athletic park is not part of this referendum.
If electors vote in favour of the referendum question, the Active Living Centre can be constructed and opened before the completion of athletic park.
“Based on extensive public input during the Active Living Centre Feasibility Study, a single, multi-purpose recreation facility is the preferred option,” the city said in it’s latest weekly information media release. “It is estimated that $300,000 can be saved annually by operating one aquatic facility with a 50m pool instead of two separate 25m pools in different locations. By building the facility near Kal Tire Place, additional cost savings and increased energy efficiencies can be realized by taking advantage of heat recapture technology; using the heat loss from the arenas to assist in heating the new Active Living Centre.”
A full list of open houses and community events, plus more information is available at www.engagevernon.ca/activelivingcentre.
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