Fairview Arena roof collapse allows for bigger future plans
It’s been four months since a devastating roof collapse at a southeast Calgary community arena. The Fairview Arena has been torn down and now there’s a plan for the future.
One of the tenants is three weeks away from moving back in.
On July 16, the Indefinite Arts Centre can return to its space. CEO Jung-Suk Ryu is anxious to be back.
“It’s been such a long time since the roof collapse and we’ve almost just settled into our temporary home and now we will be picking up the pieces and coming back. It’s surreal, but for me, it gives a sense we are back home,” Ryu said.
Since February, the centre has been operating out of a temporary home at the YMCA in Rocky Ridge but has been given the all clear to return to its permanent space.
It’s also given the group an opportunity to imagine a bigger and better facility for the future to include more studio space which would include a gallery, a cafe and a theatre.
“This building is 30, 40 years old and we need to look at ways to re-energize this space and re-energize the community. Our vision is to build a centre based on art spaces for outside artists to collaborate,” Ryu said.
Artists who take programming at Indefinite Arts are excited to return.
The facility helps artists with developmental and physical differences. Leonka Kaluha has been going there for over a year.
“It helped spread your creative side and learn new skills and meet new friends and you don’t get judged.
“I used to walk with my head down and it slowly got higher since I’ve got into the arts, it’s gotten higher and higher,” said Kaluha.
As for the arena itself, very little was salvageable. A total rebuild is required which could take a few years.
Director with the arena, Leslie Ann Kalman, said it’s been a loss and difficult for the Southern Alberta Women’s Hockey Association. It was their home ice.
“For me, it’s been traumatic.
“The last 10 years working on something, to see it pulled away with equipment and off to the dump,” Kalman said. “But it was an old building and we have an opportunity to build something new.”
City officials say they still haven’t been able to determine a cause of the roof collapse.
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