Two local skateparks, one old and one ready to break ground, were each given a $150,000 bump of cash this week.
Beaver Valley Regional Skatepark (through the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary) and the City of Rossland received the funds from Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) in its first $3.5 million cycle of recreation infrastructure grants.
While Rossland’s money is for the first leg in development of a 1,070-square metre facility, Beaver Valley is set to upgrade the former Montrose skate park into a modern venue that encourages physical activity and social interaction for youth and residents of all ages.
“Three proposals are currently being considered by the Beaver Valley Recreation Committee,” says Area A Director Ali Grieve, the committee’s chair. “Consultation with the youth of our community will be a priority. Again, another major improvement for the valley, we encourage you to visit this community enhancement later in the year.”
Other recipients of the three-year $9 million program include $10,500 for the Kootenay Columbia Trails Society to upgrade a 5.4-kilometre section of the historic Dewdney Trail south of Rossland and $39,000 to the Webster Parent Advisory Council for a new intermediate playground.
“We are so excited to have received $38,780 for our Building Pride – New Intermediate Playground Project,” says Rachel Jansen from Webster PAC. “This grant has allowed us to set a community install date of June 25 for the new playground structure.”
The Trust announced inaugural Recreation Infrastructure Grants in January, offering $3 million per year over the next three years to help groups and organizations with construction of new recreation projects or upgrades existing infrastructure.
The funds are earmarked for improvements to structures and spaces like back country trail networks, swimming pools, ice rinks, curling arenas, sports fields and parks.
Groups can receive up to 70 per cent of project costs to a maximum of $500,000. CBT maintains investing in recreation encourages residents to live active and healthy lifestyles, as well as supports tourism in the region.
“We’re pleased to provide grants to such a wide range of projects that will help people stay fit and enjoy where we live,” said Neil Muth, CBT president and chief executive officer. “Supporting residents to lead active, healthy lifestyles is one of our strategic priorities, and developing amenities that help them do so is an important step.”
The next grant intake is now open, with a July 11 deadline. For a full list of recipients, visit CBT.org.
Trail did not apply for skatepark funds through the first grant cycle, the project was not shovel ready.
“We are still in the process of working toward submitting a grant application for the July intake of the CBT Recreation Infrastructure Grants,” Trail Mayor Mike Martin told the Trail Times. “At this time the city has contracted with a skate park design firm who is working on a design and construction budget. We expect to see a design in June after which time it will be presented to the public for input.”