Local Notices

Council approves budget for Bold Centre Aquatics Facility

Approval of $44.9M budget confirms scope for aquatics facility slated to open in 2026 

Lac La Biche County Council approved the Bold Centre New Aquatics Facility schematic design and $44.9 million budget at the October 3, 2023 Council meeting. The project includes key features like a lazy river, teaching and leisure pool, six-lane competition pool, two hot tubs and Nordic spa and wellness area among other amenities as identified by the community and prioritized by Council. Project funding includes a provincial grant of $9 million, a federal grant of $6 million and a County commitment of $29.9 million.

The County previously passed Bylaw 21-036 Aquatics Centre Borrowing on February 8, 2022. To cover the cost of the $27 million project at the time, $12 million was funded by debentures, and the remaining $15 million was funded by federal and provincial grants. The debenture was issued at 4.69% on a 10-year term. 

With the new $44.9 million project cost, Council gave first reading to Bylaw 23-033 Additional Aquatics Centre Borrowing first reading at the October 3, 2023 meeting. If the Bylaw receives second and final readings at a future meeting, the term will be 20 years with an estimated interest rate of 6%. The principal will be $17.9 million, and interest is estimated at $12,360,879, for a total cost of $30,260,878.69. This is in addition to the borrowing and interest of Bylaw 21-036.

Next steps will include advertising the borrowing Bylaw 23-033, allowing for a 15-day petitioning period.

“Approving the scope and budget for the New Aquatics Facility is a significant step in progressing this important County project,” explained Mayor Paul Reutov. “It is important that we greenlight and fund the Bold Centre Aquatics Facility now, because all signs point to construction and material costs continuing to rise. By making major investments in our community while costs are manageable, we will be setting Lac La Biche County up for success in attracting new residents and improving current residents’ quality of life for years to come.”

The new aquatic facility adds another dimension to the already impressive Bold Centre that will enhance the lifestyle of all residents of Lac La Biche County by providing a safe, comfortable and convenient place to meet, stay active and engage with other community members. The facility will serve everyone, from the very young, to local seniors and regional visitors year-round. 

Lac La Biche County completed feasibility studies and community consultation in 2021 to gain input, ideas and feedback from residents and community members that will guide and shape the project. This public engagement identified and prioritized many of the features Council approved for the final project. Originally estimated at $27 million, Council increased the project budget to retain priority features and deliver maximum long-term benefits for the community. Construction market conditions also adversely impacted the overall budget, reflecting a nationwide trend of cost escalation in commodities and labour markets. 

Lac La Biche County partnered with Turnbull Construction Project Managers to manage this significant project. The project uses a Progressive Design-Build approach, which refers to a project delivery model that promotes early collaboration between the owner and a single contracting partner for both design and construction services. Council selected EllisDon & DIALOG as the successful project Design-Build team in February 2023 due to their collective experience on similar and iconic projects within Alberta. 

Geoff Watson, Partner and Principal of Turnbull Construction Project Managers, commented, “Our team is thrilled to receive approval from Council on the budget and scope for the Bold Centre New Aquatics Facility project.” He continued, “Our team, in collaboration with EllisDon & DIALOG, are eager to get shovels in the ground and take this project from conception through to completion for the County.” 

The Bold Centre New Aquatics Facility

The Bold Centre New Aquatics Facility is a multi-feature project that includes dynamic elements like a teaching and leisure pool, a competitive six-lane 25-metre pool, two waterslides, a lazy river, Nordic spa and wellness area, among other amenities. This highlight of the Bold Centre will showcase the facility as a destination that attracts new residents and visitors, keeps families in the County, offers a broad range of opportunities for fitness, leisure and competitive enthusiasts, and supports the community’s growth and sustainability. Slated for completion in the first half of 2026, the approved project budget is $44.9 million. 

Lac La Biche County

Lac La Biche County is a diverse, healthy and safe community with engaged citizens who enjoy enhanced social and recreational amenities. The County is both economically resilient with investments in top-quality infrastructure and services, and environmentally responsible as stewards who promote and protect the area’s natural assets. Lac La Biche County is the destination choice of northern Alberta.

Turnbull Construction Project Managers

Turnbull Construction Project Managers Ltd. (TCPM) provides professional project management services to private and public sector clients on commercial and residential construction projects. In operation since 1998, TCPM supports clients with all aspects of project planning, design, construction, commissioning and move-in while balancing the project functional and quality requirements with the restraints of the project budget and schedule.

For More Information:

Visit: https://boldcentreaquatics.com/

Darrell Lessmeister, Associate CAO Recreation and Community Services Division, Lac La Biche County

Concept view from the on-deck viewing area. Disclaimer: design elements subject to change.Concept view of the main entry and plaza. Disclaimer: design elements subject to change.