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‘Totality of unknowns’ prompts North Okanagan politicians to reject pool plan

Click to play video: 'Vernon’s neighbours won’t participate in Active Living Centre referendum'
Vernon’s neighbours won’t participate in Active Living Centre referendum
Vernon’s neighbours won’t participate in Active Living Centre referendum – Apr 7, 2022

Plans to put a pool and some other recreational amenities on Vernon’s old Kin Race Track failed Wednesday to get support in neighbouring communities.

Click to play video: 'Vernon moving ahead with Kin Race Track redevelopment'
Vernon moving ahead with Kin Race Track redevelopment

Jim Garlick, Mayor of Coldstream, Bob Fleming, director of Electoral Area B and Amanda Shatzko, director of Electoral Area C announced Wednesday their joint decision not to participate in the proposed Active Living Centre Project, meaning no financial support from their municipalities will go Vernon’s way.

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“The City of Vernon asked the District of Coldstream, Electoral Area B, and Electoral Area C to consider participating in the proposed Active Living Centre project. After careful consideration, we have respectfully declined to participate in the Active Living Centre project at this time,” the joint statement read.

“We are not opposed to this project in principle as we agree there is a legitimate community need for a new pool and additional recreational spaces. However, we do not have the confidence to move forward at this time based on the information that has been provided.”

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They said the decision not to participate isn’t based on a single factor, “such as timing, market volatility, accuracy of costing, contractual obligations, ownership structure, or lack of detailed information.”

Rather, it is “based on the totality of unknowns given the magnitude of the risk exposure. Given these unknowns, it is not prudent for our jurisdictions to participate at this time.”

The Active Living Centre Project is in its early stages.

Click to play video: 'Vernon area politicians moving ahead with cultural centre project'
Vernon area politicians moving ahead with cultural centre project

A referendum on the Active Living Centre is expected to happen in the fall though it’s unclear whether the departure of potential partner cities will scuttle that effort.

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READ MORE: Development of Vernon’s Kin Race Track could include pool, housing

“We encourage the City of Vernon to hold a referendum if they are satisfied that they have enough confidence to move forward with the project,” the group said.

The project was previously expected to cost $90-million.

Now the cost estimate has risen to between $112-million and $121-million.

– with files from Megan Turcato

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