Kelowna city council has thrown its support behind a plan to build new sports fieldhouse in Rutland Recreation Park.
The proposed $4.6 million two-storey building would include changing rooms, a viewing deck, as well as a medical room, storage space, a meeting room, kitchen, washrooms and a concession. It will be paid for by money raised by the Central Okanagan Rugby Enthusiasts group, which is working in conjunction with eight other organizations.
But while CORE would raise the money and operate the 9,000-square-foot building, it would be open for use by other sports groups that use the park as well.
Earlier this week, council gave city staff the green light to work with the CORE to further develop the plan.
The proposed new building would replace the existing smaller, aging fieldhouse in the park.
The park is described as the city’s major sports hub, with sports fields, ball diamonds, a soccer dome, ice rinks and pickleball courts on site, as well as other with amenities such as the Okanagan Gymnastics Centre, the Little Travellers Safety Village, a BMX track, the Kelowna Family YMCA with its an indoor pool, a community garden and the Rutland Boys and Girls Club. It also sits adjacent to Rutland Senior and Rutland Middle schools.
The new fieldhouse, if approved, would be built in 2020 after the fundraising campaign by CORE, and completed in 2021.
City staff say the building’s operation costs would be self-sustaining, with primary revenue from food and beverage sales.
It would operate as a multi-sport hub in the park.
The existing single-storey fieldhouse is in poor shape and only provides basic change and washroom facilities.
Earlier this year, the washrooms in that building were vandalized twice, costing thousands of dollars to repair.
City staff will now work with CORE, consult other park users and draw up a memorandum of understanding with the rugby group to launch the project.
Council has yet to give it final approval but pending its review of the MOU, is expected to do so in the new year.
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