Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Residents anxiously await construction at Kelvin site

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Months after public consultations were completed, residents are still waiting for shovels to hit the ground at the former Kelvin Community Centre site.


Plans originally called for the redevelopment of the site to be tendered in April, with the contract for the work to be finalized by the end of May.


During a meeting in March the city and local architectural firm Scatliff+Miller+Murray presented final design plans for the site.


The final design included a skateboard area with rails and a bowl, basketball court, pleasure skating rink, children’s art wall, and fitness trail.


Last year, Kelvin received a $400,000 commitment from the city and province to redevelop the site. The money was provided through the Building Communities Initiative funded by the two levels of government.


The money was provided with the condition it must be used by the end of 2012.


An additional $200,000 was committed by both levels of government to bring total funding for the project to $600,000.


Ken McKim, project manager with the city’s property, planning and development department, said the contract was awarded last week and Winnipeg-based J&D Penner will redevelop the site.


"We will see work starting in early October. We’re very excited to get things going on the site," McKim said.


"The bids we received were over budget, but I wouldn’t say we’re cutting back. We’re negotiating with the contractor to get it (in)on budget."


McKim said the delays were the result of the skate park designs taking longer to complete than expected.


"As the scope of the skate park expanded based on community input, it became more complex and it took our designers a bit longer than we had hoped," he said.


"It took us longer to get someone to build it. There’s only so many companies in town that are capable of doing it."


Longtime area resident John King said the constant delays and lack of communication have been frustrating for residents.


"It’s almost October now, and we’re very frustrated and disappointed. The community went in good faith and attended all the consultations," King said.


"There were no delays when they demolished the club. It’s not fair to the people in Elmwood."


McKim said the city is still committed to delivering what was discussed with residents, but some portions may have to be completed next spring.


"We’re so far along and everyone is fully committed to the project," McKim said.


"It may mean some of the work needs to be finished up in the spring given where we are right now, but the money is not going anywhere."

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adrian.alleyne@canstarnews.com

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