June 25, 2014 - 4:53 PM
VERNON – Rather than updating the aged Civic Arena, the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee has proposed building a smaller ice-sheet on the same property as Kal Tire Place should tax-payers consent to a $13.9 million price tag.
Doug Ross a manager at the City, says while several options were considered - building a 400-seat venue to join the north end of Kal Tire place created more efficiencies.
“You can operate multiple ice sheets off of one ice plant. Because of that, you gain efficiencies. You can utilize some of the same equipment, same staff, same Zamboni,” he said in a phone interview this afternoon.
Builders plan to construct the new arena in the Kal Tire Place parking lot. Ross said the plan is to reconfigure the lot to keep stalls. More spots will be added closer to the building entrance.
While a cheaper option was an update to the nearly 80-year-old Civic Arena, Ross says it would have cost almost $11 million to keep it running beyond ten years.
“When you looked at the comparison of spending $13.9 to get brand new and gain those operational efficiencies that are available to a twin facility versus spending $11 million to renovate an 80-year-old building – the politicians came to, what I think, was the right decision,” Ross said.
A $900,000 payment will come from a City reserve fund developed specifically for this project.
Members of the Greater Vernon Regional District will propose a borrowing bylaw for the remaining $13 million.
A referendum for the bylaw is scheduled for November.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014