Thursday, June 11, 2015

Pincher Creek community asked for letters of support for Central Park development grant process

Stantec Consulting Ltd. graphic

  • Support letters requested immediately to meet June 17 federal grant deadline

Toni Lucas

Pincher Creek Recreation Manager Adam Grose has a big application to finish quickly. The Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program will allocate $46.2 million across Western Canada (British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba), and eligible applicants can apply for funding under the program up to a maximum of $500,000. Grose is putting together an application for the development of Central Park, which is located west of Town Hall, including the proposed water/splash park. "I will be asking for letters of support from the community," said Grose at the June 9 meeting of Town Council.  "One of the difficulties we are finding with this project is the very short time frame."  Grose would like assistance from "Anybody that is willing to put a support letter in."

"Obviously, it being a downtown project, we will be looking for the downtown businesses to throw their support behind this project. Groups and organizations that see a benefit in this project to spruce up our downtown, to get something down here that is going to be of benefit to the whole community." The grant application has to be completed and submitted by June 17.

"If we don't go ahead with this, we won't have access to any of this money," explained Mayor Don Anderberg. "It's in recognition of Canada's 150th birthday. The time frame is not long. We only had one project that we enough information on, and enough time to put and application in on, and that's the spray park." The application proposal will incorporate the 2008 facility study which included developing Central Park, and the proposed water park. The maximum contribution from all government of Canada sources cannot exceed 50% of the total costs of a projected project.

"Don't bother Adam," said Councillor Wayne Elliott, in relation to the amount of work Grose has to accomplish in a short time frame.  "The only time we have to bug him is now." Council asked Grose a variety of questions. He explained the application will be broad, and public input will be sought after the application decisions have been made. The original Central Park development project plan included a stage area and an amphitheatre, and recent input shows that there is strong support in the area for a water park, which will be included in the application.  "If we don't get the grant we're back to the drawing board," said Grose.

Council voted to contribute up to $500,000 in matching funds, including $100,000 pledged previously. Councillor Doug Thornton explained "We could maximize on the amount of federal money coming into this project."

"Pincher Creek Parks and Open Space Master Plan identify Central Park as a wonderful opportunity to create both a multi-recreational site and a civic plaza that serves as a public gathering place. As the park is adjacent to a daycare facility, it would be very important to incorporate children's play spaces through playground facilities and activity play centers as well as children's gardens. To appeal to all ages and demographics, this space could also feature a basketball court/plaza space for older children and teens, as well as games  tables  and lawn sports  for older residents.   A large plaza and  event pavilion  could host  civic events,  but can also be utilized as an outdoor classroom  space or a formal  gathering area." - Town of Pincher Creek administration documents.

Councillor Wayne Elliott said "It will be a legacy, something I've been shooting for since grade one, without even realizing it.  This was my playground."

Letters of support can be dropped off at the Recreation/Pool facility offices on Main Street.

Spray Park Committee recommends Town Hall location

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