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Centre of Excellence 35-40 per cent complete, says project manager

Building will be home to Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre and more
Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre CEO Mark Jones, Brett Reynolds with Eagle Builders and CACAC campaign co-ordinator Carrie Bottomley look around the Centre of Excellence on Saturday. Reynolds, who is the project manager, says the building is 35-40 per cent complete. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)

The Centre of Excellence will begin serving central Albertans in less than a year.

Following a tour of the facility on Saturday, project manager Brett Reynolds told The Advocate that the building is about 35-40 per cent complete.

“Structurally we’re 100 per cent (finished). With the interiors we’re just getting started, so we’re only done like five per cent of that,” explained Reynolds, with Eagle Builders.

“The building’s serviced. We have our gas service in. We’re running natural gas for all of our heaters, which is really awesome – typically that’s something that comes at the end. We also have electrical servers coming from (Red Deer Polytechnic) already.”

Located behind the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre at RDP, the 66,566 square-foot Centre of Excellence will serve as the home of of the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre, Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre, Alberta Health Services: Red Deer Child and Youth Addiction and Mental Health Outpatient Clinic, and the Step Up Step Down youth live-in addiction and mental health program.

Reynolds said the goal is to have the facility operational by the end of August 2023.

The building is the “culmination of a lot of work from a lot of people,” said Mark Jones, Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre CEO.

“To see this going from being a dream to what it is today, it’s an unbelievable feeling for all of those people who have been involved,” he added.

Having all of these agencies working under the same roof is a benefit to the community, said Jones.

“We’ll have all of these people working under the same roof and we’ll do some research projects together to learn how to better utilize resources and strategies that are out there,” he said.

“I’m extremely excited about the opportunities we’ll have working with Red Deer Polytechnic. The research we’ll be able to do and the work-integrated learning opportunities for all of their students, for them to have practicums in here, and our educators going over there to educate them about what trauma looks like – it’s all about prevention.”

The three-storey, contemporary design will be built with intentional common and shared spaces to cultivate collaboration between allied partners, and create an environment that children, youths and families feel comfortable and safe in.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the estimated $22-million structure was held this past June.

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Sean McIntosh

About the Author: Sean McIntosh

Sean joined the Red Deer Advocate team in the summer of 2017. Originally from Ontario, he worked in a small town of 2,000 in Saskatchewan for seven months before coming to Central Alberta.
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