TSAWWASSEN, B.C. – the government of Canada is investing $16.1 million in recreational and cultural infrastructure in six different British Columbia communities.
A new $6.6 million multi-purpose community and recreation facility including a community hall/gym, boardroom, aquatic space, fitness centre, and pedestrian bridge over the neighbouring creek will be built in Sumas First Nation, and a $5 million community youth centre is planned for Tsawwassen First Nation.
Lake Country will build a new $1.6 million Indigenous Cultural Centre in the region’s Nature Park which will include a multi-purpose program space, and an exhibition gallery that doubles as an event hall. A $1.5 million Williams Lake Indian Band Administrative & Community Building in T’exelcemc will have a meeting centre, citizen’s archive, as well as arts and artifacts on display and administrative offices.
The Juan de Fuca Arena Improvement project on the west shore of Vancouver Island will replace the facility’s arena floor and spectator seating as well of upgrading the heating system and dressing rooms at a cost of $798,936. A new $582,400 field house at the Cowichan Sportsplex in North Cowichan will include accessible public washrooms and changerooms, a multi-purpose community meeting/event space, and a facility administration area. The government of B.C. will contribute $3.3 million and the various applicants will contribute $6.6 million to the projects.
“Culture and recreation centres are the backbone of our communities and important focal points for activities that bring people together and help them thrive and grow. These six projects will provide people from Williams Lake to Tsawwassen with the modern, accessible and culturally adapted facilities they need to nurture healthy lifestyles, promote their cultures, learn new things and flourish for generations to come,” federal Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility Carla Qualtrough said.
“B.C.’s community and recreation centres provide places of meeting to enrich the mind, build relationships and strengthen our health. Local governments recognize their critical role in supporting the quality of life and appreciate the support provided by the federal and provincial governments to invest in these facilities., Union of BC Municipalities president Arjun Singh said.
The federal government’s funding of the projects is through the Community, Culture, and Recreation Infrastructure stream of the Investing in Canada plan. Funding through that stream provides up to 33.33 per cent provincial funding and up to 40 per cent federal funding for local government projects and up to 75 per cent federal funding for Indigenous ultimate recipients.
Off-reserve Indigenous projects can receive up to 15 per cent provincial funding and up to 75 per cent federal funding and not for profit projects can get up to 25 per cent provincial funding and up to 40 per cent federal funding.