Blackfalds approves $24.6M arena and library expansion

Council voted 4 to 3 to approve the final and guaranteed maximum price of the $24.6 million

Construction will begin on expansion of the Blackfalds multiplex in June, with an estimated completion date of spring 2021. (Contributed Photo)

The Town of Blackfalds is one step closer toward its arena and library expansion project.

It announced Thursday that shovels will be in the ground in June, with a targeted completion date of spring 2021 for the $24.6-million project.

That maximum price includes $18 million for the arena, $1 million of which is being contributed by the Blackfalds Bulldogs Junior A franchise, and $6.6 million for the library.

“First of all, this will be an excellent value for our community when it is built,” said Blackfalds Mayor Richard Poole.

“It will be second to none, and I believe it will be a project our community will be proud of.”

Over the past year, with public open houses and meetings, changes were made to the design of the facility to increase functionality, which has also resulted in a higher total cost, said the town.

Tuesday, Blackfalds council voted 4 to 3 to approve the project.

Poole added he’s excited to see what an Alberta Junior Hockey League team can bring to the community, but also how vital the library will be.

“The new library is going to be one of the largest in central Alberta and, for a community under 20,000, this will be an attraction that we will not only be extremely proud of, but given the provisions of the facility, will allow for progressive programming even in a post-COVID era,” he said.

A small groundbreaking ceremony will be held June 19. The event will be by invitation only, to ensure physical and social distancing, says the town.

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