Hope shines for Esquimalt rec centre upgrades

New provincial grant could mean second chance for project

Plans to enhance the Esquimalt Recreation Centre may get a second chance.

With council’s approval, the township will be applying for up to $400,000 from a new $30-million infrastructure grant through B.C.’s Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. The deadline is Dec. 28.

In September, the township received some bad news that its application to receive $1.2 million in federal funding had been denied. To be eligible, the township committed to borrowing $380,000 for the project.

Hopes were renewed that some of the work could happen through the new community recreation program grant, Scott Hartman, director of Esquimalt’s parks and recreation department, said Monday night.

To secure the provincial dollars, council pledged to reallocate $100,000 of money already earmarked for the project in the 2011 budget to project, which includes changes to the atrium and a new multipurpose classroom.

“It’s nice that it’s less money,” Coun. Lynda Hundleby said of the reallocated funding.

With the grant, the upgrades could be completed by April 2015.