LETTER: Where's the new arena for Conception Bay North?

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In August 2011, the provincial government announced funding for new arenas for Paradise, Conception Bay South and Harbour Grace.

Letter to the editor

The rinks in Paradise and C.B.S. are under construction, but there hasn't been as much as a shovel of soil moved for the Harbour Grace facility.

It's been nearly three years since the funding was announced for the Harbour Grace arena but tenders have not even been called yet for the project.

Some residents are concerned whether this facility will become a reality and will only be convinced it is going ahead when they see steel being erected.

The excitement and optimism following the arena funding announcement made by former Carbonear - Harbour Grace MHA and cabinet minister Jerome Kennedy has been replaced by confusion and scepticism in recent months.

Current Liberal MHA Sam Slade said recently on a radio talk show that he has been seeking information from the government about the delays to the facility, but has received few answers.

Questions have arisen about whether the government is still committed to this project and, if not, the reason for its cancellation.

Harbour Grace town council members have indicated they have done their due diligence in regards to the financial feasibility of this project for the town. The town accountant has determined that, not only can the town afford the required 20 per cent of the construction cost, but it can also afford to operate the facility when it is opened.

Harbour Grace has also secured financing from a banking institution for its share of the construction cost.

The town council has approved the site recommendation made by a government appointed arena building committee.

Council has indicated that it has done everything required of it by the provincial government to get this arena started.

It appears that the ball is now in the government's court to take the next steps required for construction of this facility to begin.

A modern, state-of-the-art sports complex would go a long way towards meeting the recreational needs of the residents of the entire Conception Bay North region.

It will provide an attractive facility for sports, concerts and trade shows. It will also promote healthy lifestyles for area residents, as the plans for the new arena include an indoor walking track, thereby providing them the opportunity to avail of safe, comfortable, and year round physical activity.

It is the hope of many residents of the region that the current PC government will follow through on its promise to build this much needed facility for the area.

— Paul McCarthy writes from Harbour Grace

Organizations: Grace town council

Geographic location: Paradise, Carbonear

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Recent comments

  • watcher
    May 05, 2014 - 22:23

    carbonear operates the swimming pool without any help from other towns, bay roberts operates the bay arena without help from other towns,whats the difference?

    • Better watcher
      May 06, 2014 - 14:13

      Hey watcher , get with the times , it was only the year before last "the pool" wanted carbonear " first " on swimming lessons .the difference between carbonear and bay Roberts than Hr.grace is tax base and the towns huge millrate , but your probably from one of the (LSD ) sites like bristols hope that free loads off others .

    • Shister
      May 07, 2014 - 06:47

      The two said towns operate the respective recreation facilities without help from the other towns because the other towns are do not agree to cost-shared services. The easiest and perhaps only way to save money for towns is cost-sharing. Yes Victoria, UIC, Bryants Cove, Bristols Hope, Freshwater, Perrys Cove, Salmon Cove will agree if they get a better deal such as firefighting services, animal control, heavy equipment. EVERYTHING SHOULD BE SPLIT AMONG ALL TOWNS, IF NOT PAY MORE TO USE. The only fait way. Cheap-Skate

    • "A" tax payer
      May 13, 2014 - 08:14

      "Better Watcher" you should be careful, because it is commonly known in Carbonear that if it comes to dictating who would get to use the pool, the tax paying residents, those who cover the $200,000 deficit per year, all believe they should be given an opportunity first. Each household in Carbonear currently pays over $105 per year to cover the cost, now the grubbers want (those in non paying municipalities) want to have access first. Use your head, think about it.

  • taxpayer
    May 05, 2014 - 18:23

    What we have to remember is this is more than just a new stadium for the town. The site selected for the new arena has the potential for economic growth for the town. The upper part of Jamie's Way with its close proximity to the high volume traffic on the Veteran's Highway is an attractive location for potential new businesses. But businesses are likely not willing to incur the expense of running water and sewer up from Harvey Street on their own. When the water and sewer is run to the new arena it will open the nearby land for commercial development as it will remove a major obstacle for new businesses to set up shop in that area. This is a great opportunity for new businesses to move into town instead of watching them move out.

  • Hr.grace mill rate payer
    May 05, 2014 - 12:10

    Good thing we still got good old S.w. moores , better than most got, and any minor hockey parent would know, The powers to be on this are mistaken " we don't need a new stadium" my mil rate in this town is the highest around and I'm gonna fund a new stadium with no input from other towns . On my sons minor hockey team of 40 boys and girls , 6 are from this town, carbonear , uic , Victoria , Bryant's cove and all down the shore, don't have to help? Something wrong here, now put the hr grace backed rink where? Outside Hr. grace proper, well only thing I can see , is big trouble for tax payers of this town, that are paying are "gas tax" money to operate the one we got, Please help our towns people , have a referendum and see how many residents want this not CeeBee stars fans.

    • Free Loader - Bristol Hope/Perry's Cove
      May 05, 2014 - 15:45

      The people of Carbonear and Harbour Grace should know that as residents from outside your town we are not going to pay for services provided in your town. We don't have municipal taxes as we live in Local Service Districts (LSD) which depend solely on Gov. Thanks for helping us, but for now you are on your own. Let us know if a rental hour becomes available.