December 03, 2015 - 2:30 PM
KAMLOOPS – While Kamloops residents might have voted 'no' to a performing arts centre, the people behind the YES Campaign are not giving up.
Spokesperson Brenden Shaw says the group is planning to meet informally in the next few weeks, the first time they have met since the Nov. 7 referendum.
“We want to discuss the referendum and where do we go from here,” Shaw says. “The important thing is that a performing arts centre comes to fruition and to make sure everyone is on the same page.”
Shaw says the goals of the group have not changed and everyone associated is still "110 per cent" behind the project. He also says the requirements of the city — theatrical and stage space as well as a downtown parkade — have not changed either.
“Right now there is definable need within the community for something like this,” he says.
Shaw says the business case made for building the peforming arts centre was the best, most viable solution at the time. It took a lot of time and money, plus various working groups were consulted.
While he says it is possible modifications could be made to the original proposal — or private funding could be found — it’s too early to decide.
“It’s a lot longer process than some people think," he says.
Parks, recreation and culture director Byron McCorkell says the city will regroup with its stakeholders and committees to determine the next steps. He says his department will most likely bring the issue back to city council in the New Year.
McCorkell says the referendum was about borrowing $49 million to build the parkade and the performing arts centre ,not if one should or shouldn't be built.
He says the plan to build the project doesn't need to change, just the plan on how to pay for it.
The proposed performing arts centre was a $90 million project, with $25 million of that for a downtown parkade, all to be built on Seymour Street on the site of the former Kamloops Daily News Building.
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