Teck donates $1.6 million to Riverfront Centre

Big news on the Riverfront Centre build, Teck Trail Operations is committing $1.6 million toward the project.

Official ground breaking for the Riverfront Centre is Thursday at 11:30 a.m.

Official ground breaking for the Riverfront Centre is Thursday at 11:30 a.m.

The timing couldn’t be better for a major funding announcement between the City of Trail and Teck Trail Operations.

Smiles will be even wider when ground breaks for the Riverfront Centre today, following Wednesday’s news that Teck is donating $1.6 million toward the integrated library/museum.

“Trail city council is very pleased that Teck Trail Operations, who have generously supported many of the city’s civic facilities in the past, is making a significant financial contribution to a facility that takes design inspiration from Trail’s heritage and industrial roots,” said Mayor Mike Martin . “Through this generous contribution, Teck Trail Operations has engaged the community in a meaningful way. We are absolutely delighted, that with this support, we are able to provide the citizens of Trail and surrounding communities with a modern and vibrant facility offering engaging museum exhibits and contemporary educational resources,” he added. “The new amenity will strengthen community spirit and civic pride while creating a welcoming and safe gathering hub in Trail’s downtown core.”

Library director Barbara Gibson was sworn to secrecy when she first heard the news just one day after Thanksgiving.

Gibson admits to being a little antsy when she and historical society director Jamie Forbes were summoned to city hall on Tuesday.

“The first thing I thought was, ‘What have I done wrong,’” she laughed. “But then I mulled it over and thought it could have something to do with Teck, because I know Trail council has been working really, really hard to bring Teck on board with this project,” Gibson said. “So I wasn’t necessarily surprised because I always though that Teck, as the great corporate citizen that it has been in the past, would ultimately take the opportunity to come on board with this project and partner with the city, as they have in previous projects,” she added.

“So, ‘Hats off’ to city council and Teck, I know Trail council has been working on this ever since we first sat down and said the building is going ahead they have worked very hard and I applaud them for it, I really do.”

Teck has committed an initial donation of $500,000 in 2016, with the balance borrowed by the City of Trail and repayment supported by Teck donations over a multi-year term.

A section of the facility will be named for Teck in recognition of the company’s support of the project and its role as one of the leading private sector partners for the community.

“As a dedicated partner in the Greater Trail area for 120 years, we are proud to support the Trail Riverfront Centre, which will help foster an enriched and sustainable community,” said Thompson Hickey, general manager, Teck Trail Operations. “This facility will promote learning experiences in a setting that celebrates the region’s rich history and provides a gathering place for the community where many of our employees proudly live and work.”

The total cost of the Riverfront Centre is approximately $8.3 million. The other major funding partner, Columbia Basin Trust, committed $500,000 toward the project last fall.