Ad hoc pool committee members named by council

Another Red Deer committee has been tasked with determining the scope of a proposed aquatics centre.

Another Red Deer committee has been tasked with determining the scope of a proposed aquatics centre.

The Red Deer Multi-Use Aquatic Centre Review Ad Hoc Committee will decide the size, included amenities, cost and location of a proposed facility before submitting a plan to city council this summer. Members of the 10-person ad hoc committee were named on Monday.

They include Councillors Dianne Wyntjes and Lawrence Lee, six citizen representatives and two members of the Central Alberta Aquatics group.

Wyntjes said she plans to dive into the work with an open mind.

She said the city has to be mindful of the operational costs and impacts on future budgets and the tax base if they build an aquatics centre.

The oft-quoted price tag is $90 million for a centre.

The 2010-2013 council footed $200,000 for a concept and business design in 2010.

Work was completed in 2011 and Rotary Recreation Park was approved as a potential site in March 2011.

Wyntjes said they do not want to duplicate any work that has already been accomplished. She said there are some unknowns, including the pending closure of the Michener site and its impact on the city’s pool infrastructure.

Last November, council put off making a decision on putting the facility in the capital plan until they had gauged public opinion and had more information on the project.

The city is currently preparing a community amenity wish list.

Committee citizen representative Garfield Marks said he wants to ensure the city gets a bang for its buck if an aquatics centre gets the green light.

Marks said Red Deer does not need a “taj mahal” of aquatic centres for a small group of swimmers.

Grant Howell, vice-chairman of the Central Alberta Aquatic Centre group, said he hopes the task force reviews the considerable amount of work that has been done and comes to a conclusion about how they address the significant pool deficiency in Red Deer.

“My hope is that we don’t spin our wheels about the need in Red Deer,” said Howell. “I hope we are past that and we can come up with some good suggestions for what is best for Red Deer.”

The committee will make final recommendations to the city council by June 30.

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