The M.D. of Bonnyville has awarded tenders for new outdoor rinks for Cherry Grove and Ardmore.
During its regular council meeting, the tenders were awarded to GenMec ACL at $2.4 million, which was funded through the 2020 Parks Capital Budget.
The rinks will be built from steel–a cheaper option from fabrics–and is being designed with flexible, year-round use in mind.
Construction is expected to be done towards the end of the year in October and November.
“We’re looking at Black Diamond as the example to follow. There’s going to be a covering slightly down the side which will open on the bottom, so there’s still going to be that open-air appeal,” said Reeve Greg Sawchuk on The Morning After.
“In the wintertime, the facilities can be used for skating around as usual, and then come summer they could be used to host an art show or farm festival.”
The M.D. has reached an agreement with both hamlets to share different responsibilities for the facilities, with the communities handling the day-to-day operations while the M.D. will handle the “larger scale” aspects.
“We as a municipality need to understand that we can’t have community groups sell pies in order to keep these larger type structures operating,” said M.D. CAO Luc Mercier.
“As these rinks start to get older and start to require more significant maintenance, these groups are going to have a hard time, because it’s not the lesser type services that will be required.
“As we’re spending budgets of $1 million and $2 million, we want to ensure that infrastructure remains upkept, and more importantly managed and operated to our standards.
“We need to recognize that we need to help these groups in one way shape or form.”
Both rinks will be built on land owned by their respective community societies.