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Thursday , 1 October 2020

Elk Point Chamber: What’s Next for the Eco Centre

UPDATE:

The Town of Elk Point would like the public to know there are no plans to relocate the solar lights on the walking trail, on west end of town, 50th avenue. The Town has never been approached by any citizens or groups to move the lights, nor has there been a proposal in front of Council to relocate the lights. The Town of Elk Point does not foresee any circumstances where the Town would relocate or remove the lights from the walking trail.

 

The Elk Point Chamber of Commerce is looking at ways to expand the use of the Eco Centre. Chamber President Jonny Nielsen says the goal to any improvements or expansions is to keep the centre environmentally green.

“We can move forward with long-term plans,” Nielsen says plans include expanding the use of the centre, “we have two non-profit organizations that are using the meeting room upstairs.” Neilson says the Chamber extended an invitation for those non-profit groups to use the filing cabinet system in the basement of the building. This way the group would not have to store and haul materials they may need for meetings. Nielsen hopes the Chamber is able to offer this service to more groups at a reduced, non-profit rate.

“We use the building for some of our meetings,” Nielsen says the Chamber isn’t able to host their monthly meetings at the venue because the design of the building only allows for 12 people at the board table. Committee meetings, such as the Extravaganza committee, hold their meetings in the board room. The FCSS uses two offices on the main floor, and during the summer the lobby is used as the Town’s information and tourist booth.

“One of the goals from day-one was that the Eco Centre was a low-energy consuming building,” says Nielsen. The Eco Centre has a solar panel, which drastically reduces the energy bill to run the building. It also has a windmill, which unfortunately is not producing enough energy to offset the cost of operating the mill. “We know for sure the windmill is not producing and we will be selling it. With the money from the sale we will re-invest alternative energy sources for the centre.”

With the new NDP government there will be more funding for alternative energy.  – Jonny Nielsen President Elk Point Chamber of Commerce

 

The Eco Centre is used as a popular staging area for the Iron Horse Trail; used by walkers, snowmobilers, ATV riders, and more. Currently, there is only one light and the area is quite dim. The Chamber hopes to add more lighting to the area.

 I would like to see the Eco Centre as a resource centre for alternative energy sources – Jonny Nielson President Elk Point Chamber of Commerce

With $150,000 debt on the building, Nielsen says any plans for expanding the Eco Centre would have to include reducing the debt, generating income, or reducing the cost of operating the building.

 

*In an early version of this article it was stated that the Town of Elk Point was discussing options to move solar lights that are on the 50th avenue walking trail on the west end of town. Note corrections have been made to this article and the Town of Elk Point has not been approached about relocating the lights, nor has the Town discussed any options to relocate the lights, and the Town does not have plans to discuss options to relocate the lights. 

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