Davidson Centre will get new gym

Feds, province to kick in $2 million

By Eric Howald


Kincardine will receive $2-million in federal and provincial money for a facelift to the Davidson Centre.


Only a few weeks ago, at the end of May, council applied for a $2.9 million grant under the Recreational Infrastructure Canada Program in Ontario (RInC Ontario). The announcement of the money was made at the Davidson Centre Monday morning by MP Ben Lobb and MPP Carol Mitchell.


The federal, provincial and municipal governments will each contribute $1 million to the project. Plans call for new dressing rooms at the Davidson Centre, construction of a new gym and a warm viewing area for hockey fans. The addition will  go on the east end of the building, north of the main entrance.


Councillor Guy Anderson, chair of recreational services, said the board will meet shortly to organize a fact-finding tour of area gymnasiums. Then the engineers will be called in and tenders hopefully called this fall for a spring construction start. The work has to be done by March of 2011 for the municipality to collect the federal and provincial funding.


The addition will stretch into the first row of parking, said Anderson, so more paving will have to be done in the gravel areas to the north and east of the current parking lot. Extending parking won’t affect any other facilities, he said.


A recently completed recreational needs study said a gymnasium was the number one recreational need.

The study results surprised Anderson. “When you do studies, you find a lot of interesting things. I’m glad we did it.”


Both Lobb and Mitchell congratulated the municipality on its successful application.


The province has now put $2 million into the Davidson Centre in the past year, Mitchell said.


In the past, people have complained that rural Ontario has been left out when it comes to grants. Not any more, said Lobb, as his government has now put $100 million into the riding. The money will help make the riding become a destination for retirees, he said.


When the gymnasium is finished, said Anderson, Kincardine will have some of the best recreational facilities in the province.