Council votes in favour of Canada Winter Games bid

Red Deer’s bid for the 2019 Canada Winter Games may not include hosting synchronized swimming locally.

Red Deer’s bid for the 2019 Canada Winter Games may not include hosting synchronized swimming locally.

Council voted in favour of the bid Monday, hosting all sports locally except for an off-site venue and athletes village for synchronized swimming.

Having to move synchronized swimming out of the city re-awakened the debate of a new swimming facility in Red Deer.

Councillors debated public consultation about a new swimming facility in relation to their bid for the games, but ultimately approved the bid and moving synchronized swimming off-site.

Mayor Morris Flewwelling said the motion approving the bid does not preclude the city from going beyond it.

“Given the work that has already been done and given the potential this community has in terms of its location, facilities, volunteers and readiness we’re going to put on a winter games the likes of which this country has never seen,” said Flewwelling.

Administration recommended placing a bid to host all sports locally with synchronized swimming to be held at a secondary site in either Calgary or Edmonton.

Council heard the bid would come with an estimated $22.1 million capital price tag to ensure all existing facilities are up to technical standards.

Building an aquatic facility to host synchronized swimming along with the other facility upgrades would cost in the neighbourhood of $71.5 million.

Shelley Gagnon, Recreation, Parks and Culture manager, said the city put together what they felt was the best economically advantageous and financially sustainable and strongest bid possible for the city. She said this option would have the least impact on the capital budget.

Gagnon told council the community must demonstrate the ability to host all sports in the games with the appropriate venues, field of play standards and support space requirements. She said the venues must be a maximum of a 30-minute travel time (with some exceptions) and the community must have a strong history of hosting major sporting events. The community must also be 90 minutes away from a major airport.

Gagnon told council that the city is well-positioned for a successful bid.

The budget implications will be considered during the 10-year Capital Plan deliberations in November 2013.

The city will also consider pursue discussions with community partners like Red Deer College on the construction of a multiplex to host short track speed skating and with Canyon Ski Resort to meet the technical requirements to host most of the alpine, freestyle and snowboard sports.

In the past, the federal and provincial governments have committed $3 million each in capital funding. More details are expected to come at the official bid meeting. In terms of operating, in past games both governments have contributed $8.1 million each to the games.

Council also agreed to submit a letter of intent to bid and to pay $12,000, the first portion of the bid fee.

The deadline for letters of intent to bid is Nov.29, 2013. The shortlist of cities will be announced in February 2014. In September 2014, the successful bid community will be announced.

The Winter and Summer Games alternate every two years, and each province and territory takes their turn. The last time Alberta hosted Canada Games, they were Winter Games held in Grande Prairie in 1995.

In other council news:

l City council set the clear message – pay your taxes on time. Council received 15 requests for property tax penalty cancellations of a total of 91 properties totally roughly $20, 633.84. Council voted not to waive the penalty cancellation requests.

“It is not our money,” said Mayor Morris Flewwelling. “If it was my money I might do it differently. It is public money. And we have to do what we believe is publicly acceptable for the majority of our public.”

Just Posted

Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien speaks during a news conference in Ottawa, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. The federal privacy watchdog has closed the file on a complaint about the data-harvesting practices of three national political parties, saying federal privacy law does not apply to the activities in question because they are not commercial in nature. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Privacy watchdog closes file on complaint against federal political parties

Latest setback for privacy and accountability advocates

Alberta has made a more detailed framework for those looking to acquire an exemption to the mandatory indoor mask bylaw. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)
Alberta changes requirements for mask exemptions

Masks wearing has been recommended for almost a year and provincially mandated… Continue reading

Alberta’a chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Thursday that there are more than 328,000 vaccine appointments booked over the next seven days. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta surpasses 2 million doses administered of COVID-19 vaccine

Red Deer down to 835 active cases of COVID-19

Bo’s Bar and Grill owner Brennen Wowk said the hospitality industry is looking for more clarity from the province around what conditions must be met to allow for restaurants reopening. (Advocate file photo)
Frustated restaurant owners want to know government’s reopening plan

Restaurant owners feel they are in lockdown limbo

Mental health: Gossiping, backbiting and forming factions is unhealthy

We all know of dysfunctional organizations, which can be as troublesome as… Continue reading

Family practice physician Christina Tuomi, D.O., (right) gets Homer's first dose of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine from Emergency Department nurse Steve Hughes (left) on Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020 at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer, Alaska. Tuomi has been the hospital's medical lead throughout the pandemic. (Photo courtesy Derotha Ferraro/South Peninsula Hospital)
Alberta physicians: Vaccines are our path forward

As the AMA representatives for Alberta’s family physicians, we were immensely relieved… Continue reading

Vancouver Canucks' Nils Hoglander, right, is checked by Calgary Flames goalie Jacob Markstrom during third-period NHL hockey action in Calgary, Thursday, May 13, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Lindholm, Tkachuk lead Calgary Flames in 4-1 win over Vancouver Canucks

Lindholm, Tkachuk lead Calgary Flames in 4-1 win over Vancouver Canucks

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine, right, drives to the basket against Toronto Raptors center Khem Birch, left, and guard Jalen Harris during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Chicago, Thursday, May 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
LaVine, Markkanen lead Bulls past Raptors, 114-102

LaVine, Markkanen lead Bulls past Raptors, 114-102

NFL schedules get off to strong starts with Week 1 twinbills

NFL schedules get off to strong starts with Week 1 twinbills

The Saddledome, home of the Calgary Flames, is shown in Calgary, Thursday, March 12, 2020. The final three games of Canada's Secret Cup women's hockey tournament will be played in Calgary's NHL arena.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Secret Cup women’s tournament final games to be held in Calgary’s Saddledome

Secret Cup women’s tournament final games to be held in Calgary’s Saddledome

FILE - In this Thursday, July 18, 2019 file photo, Ron Francis talks to reporters in Seattle after he was introduced as the first general manager for Seattle's yet-to-be-named NHL hockey expansion team. Four years since George McPhee was a “puppet master” of the NHL leading up to the Vegas expansion draft, general managers approached this trade deadline with Seattle’s upcoming addition to the league in mind. While Kraken GM Ron Francis prepares – and maybe made a handshake deal or two already like McPhee did – Seattle was on his colleagues’ minds.(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Kraken still plan to hire coach before expansion draft

Kraken still plan to hire coach before expansion draft

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney attends a news conference in Calgary on Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020. Simmering internal discontent in his United Conservative caucus has boiled over into an open challenge to his leadership. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Two Alberta UCP members kicked out of caucus after challenging Kenney’s leadership

Two Alberta UCP members kicked out of caucus after challenging Kenney’s leadership

Most Read