New arena construction on track

Site and foundation work is almost done on the new $21.6-million arena downtown.

Red Deer’s new arena is starting to take shape.

Site preparation and foundation work is almost done, said project superintendent Curtis Martinek on Thursday.

Construction crews were working on foundation walls and footings this week with some exterior walls expected to go up next week. The $21.6-million facility is expected to open in the fall of 2018 to be ready for the 2019 Canada Winter Games.

The new arena will be a significant upgrade over its venerable predecessor, which was torn down last summer. Red Deer Arena was built in 1952 and was last renovated in 1995.

Room-temperature seating, indoor walking track, team warm-up areas, skate sharpening and laundry facilities are just a few of the modern twists envisioned for the new facility. A dramatic glazed entrance and an internal link to the Pidherney Curling Centre next door are other features expected to impress.

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