Medicine Hat News

Follow the evidence on Veiner Centre


Dear editor,

In regard to the comments by Coun. Julie Friesen regarding the Viener Centre in last Wednesday’s News, I think she should look at the history of this facility and she will see why there is such poor support.

After the flood, this facility sat in disarray for several years with no action by the city, with the excuse that it would be damaged by further floods. Now, there is a berm system to protect it. They closed the fitness facility in the basement under the guise of future flooding. Only after major complaints by the seniors in the Hat did the city undertake repairs and renovation­s, with it only open for less than a year due to COVID.

When it reopened there was a significan­t increase in the membership fees, if my memory is correct, over 100 per cent with a major loss in services, the fitness facility, with the equipment purchased by the seniors disappeari­ng and moved to the Strathcona Centre, with another major cost associated to use it. Food costs went up at the Bistro for lunches.

Many seniors who developed and paid taxes in this city can’t afford these cost increases for a decrease in services.

Further she talks about if the seniors don’t use the facility, momentum may build to find alternate uses for the space. She, all city councillor­s and mayor should remember the Vieners donated the land to the city for the constructi­on of a seniors facility. If this facility is used for another use, not the seniors, there could be some interestin­g ramificati­ons including the Vieners making the city relinquish the ownership of the property.

C. Michael Quinn Medicine Hat

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