Red Deer North will see the first community centre of its kind in Red Deer, following Municipal Planning Commission unanimous approval on Wednesday of a development permit for the $8.8-million project.
The North Red Deer Community Centre, which involved extensive community consultation over three years, will be built in the northwest part of the Glendale neighbourhood, and serve several other surrounding communities including Johnstone Park, Johnstone Crossing and Kentwood West.
Shelley Gagnon, City of Red Deer manager of Recreation Parks and Culture, said that while most communities in the city have smaller “skate shack” facilities, the community recreation centre is unique and will be larger, serve more purposes and a wider area.
The overall building would offer multi-functional spaces to be used for activities such as arts and leisure, meetings, learning, and recreational programs. There will also be community garden space.
The centre will be built beside the city’s centennial Glendale skate park, and just west of Glendale Middle School, at the intersection of Taylor Drive and 77 Street (6391 76 St.)
Construction is scheduled to commence this fall, with completion toward the end of 2018, Gagnon said.
The two-storey building will be 24,750 square feet in size, and finished in textured concrete panels and tinted glass with natural wood canopy.
The project will be completed in two phases with the first part being the building and a 65-stall parking lot beside 77th Street. A new access to the site off 77th Street will be built. There will be an outdoor green space south of the building, as well as pathways, sidewalks and access around the site, connecting the skate park, school and parking areas.
The second phase involves more parking and a walkway, bringing the total net parking area to 97 stalls after 20 are removed from the skate park area. The site also provides space for a future playground.
Coun. Dianne Wyntjes said the community recreation centre is a welcome development and she believed the community would be really happy with it moving forward.