The renovation project for Lumby’s Pat Duke arena has run into hurdles in its design stage, the Regional District North Okanagan announced Wednesday. (photo submitted)

North Okanagan arena renovations facing design challenges

Despite design hurdles, target construction start date remains Spring 2020

  • Aug. 31, 2019 9:00 a.m.

Lumby’s Pat Duke Arena has run into problems in the design stage of its $3 million renovation project, but it’s still sticking to its target construction start date of Spring 2020.

The more than 50-year-old arena – which won the 2016 Kraft Hockeyville competition – is in need of more change rooms, particularly a dedicated room for women who have never had adequate facilities during co-ed games in the building. The arena is also not up to current accessibility standards and is ill-equipped to accommodate people with mobility issues.

The arena was the subject of extensive planning and consultation work in late 2018, which have helped MQN Architecture & Interior Design in its design plan for the renovations. However, their efforts to complete a design have uncovered challenges inherent to the building’s age.

“In an older building, unforeseen challenges are not uncommon. Most of the complications have been related to the age of the building,” said Tannis Nelson, manager of Community Services.

“Building codes have changed a lot since this centennial arena was commissioned in 1967, and we must conform to current codes. This has required a lot of thoughtful problem solving and innovative solutions,” Nelson said.

Related: Lumby’s Pat Duke Memorial Arena plans finalized, public’s opinion sought

Related: Lumby arena renovations looming

“This is a significant investment that we are making for the future,” said Rick Fairbairn, Chair of the White Valley Parks, Recreation and Culture Advisory Committee. “We are committed to moving it along as quickly as possible, but we also want to make sure that we get it right.”

A community effort to fundraise for improvements to the arena began in 2016. As a result, Lumby won Kraft Hockeyville and received $100,000 to put towards the facility.

More than $2.5 million was awarded on top of that in March 2018 to make more extensive arena improvements. Grants from TELUS and the Regional District North Okanagan and community fundraising have also helped to cover the $3 million price tag on the renovation project.

Read More: Lumby pedalling toward bike park

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Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
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