Pla­cen­tia swim­ming pool pro­ject looks to bank

Com­mit­tee wants loan to start con­struc­tion in 2016

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

With any luck, the youth of Pla­cen­tia could be splash­ing around in their new pool by some­time next year.

That’s if the Pla­cen­tia Lions Club swim­ming pool com­mit­tee re­ceives the bless­ing of the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment to go ahead and bor­row the $4.5 mil­lion needed to get the pro­ject started.

That’s the plan ac­cord­ing to com­mit­tee chairman Jamie Neville.

The fund­ing was made avail­able through amend­ments to the Voisey’s Bay De­vel­op­ment Agree­ment. That money be­comes avail­able in 2017.

With engi­neer­ing work sched­uled to come back some­time in the next cou­ple of weeks, the group is anx­ious to go to ten­der on the highly an­tic­i­pated fa­cil­ity.

“All we need for the banks is a let­ter that says when the money comes for­ward, it’ll be put into our ac­count be­cause we can bor­row the money and start this pro­ject this sum­mer and get it started.

“We won’t know any­thing for an­other few weeks,” Neville Told the Com­pass.

What they want is a loan guar­an­tee so when the Voisey’s Bay money be­comes avail­able, the Lions Club and the town will be able to pay the bills.

In the mean­time, the group has $1 mil­lion avail­able from the Atlantic Canada Op­por­tu­ni­ties Agency (ACOA), as well as close to $500,000 of the Lions’ Club money raised through var­i­ous fundrais­ers.

In other news, the group has been in con­tact with the YMCA about com­ing on board to run the fa­cil­ity once the pro­ject is fin­ished.

The aquatic cen­tre would be built onto the Unity Parc Arena in Pla­cen­tia and is de­signed to serve not only the im­me­di­ate com­mu­nity, but also the re­gion as a whole.

This pro­posed state-of-theart fa­cil­ity would have six lanes, a wad­ing pool, a com­mon area and elevator ac­cess to the ad­ja­cent arena.

“This isn’t just a pool for Pla­cen­tia,” said Neville. “It’s a pool for the en­tire re­gion.”

As of dead­line Fri­day, the com­mit­tee had not heard from the Pla­cen­tia-St.Mary’s MHA Sherry Gam­bin-Walsh. At­tempts to reach Gam­bin-Walsh were un­suc­cess­ful.

The Com­pass con­tacted the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment for an up­date on the pro­ject, but that in­for­ma­tion was also not avail­able.

SUB­MIT­TED ILLUSTRATION

The Lions Club swim­ming pool com­mit­tee is closer to see­ing their dream be­come a re­al­ity.

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