The Town has been exploring the idea of constructing a recreation facility with twin arenas and an aquatic centre for many years. As early as 2004, a Recreation Master Plan included the initial concept which was followed by high level designs for the addition of another ice surface to the Dale Fisher Arena. In 2009, a grant application was crafted that once again included design elements for the expansion of the current arena, providing renderings of two ice surfaces and an aquatic centre.
In 2018, the Town considered a proposal to build a new recreation facility west of HWY 60 which would act as an anchor and help stimulate commercial activity in Devon to promote business and residential growth for the community. Public participation played a large role in this concept with numerous community engagement sessions being conducted with Devon residents and other stakeholders. After hearing residents feedback on the proposal, the Town recognized that community support for the project was split and the Town would need to explore alternative solutions to bring development, while keeping in mind what Devon residents were looking for should the Town be able to build a new recreation facility.
In August 2020, an alternative solution to both an expanded recreation facility and a catalyst for development was found as the Town's application for funding under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure grant program (ICIP) and approved by the federal government to expand the existing Dale Fisher Arena into a multi-use recreation facility, revitalizing the arena and improving recreation services for Devon residents and those within the region. The previous public engagement conducted in 2018 greatly factored into the grant funding decision.
Learn more about the funding announcement here
The Town has been working towards grant funding through the federal and provincial governments since the fall of 2018. Many iterations of the model were developed and revised with Devon being approved in August of 2020 for $13.5M in funding to expand the current Dale Fisher Arena into a multi-use recreation facility.
In total, the Town will receive $7,357,885 from the federal government's Investing in Canada Infrastructure grant program (ICIP) and $6,130,958 in provincial Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) funding to support infrastructure projects, create jobs, grow the economy and support a healthier and more sustainable community. The province required all municipal applications to allocate their MSI dollars to be provincially endorsed and be eligible for ICIP grant consideration by the federal government.
Town of Devon Council was in favour of reallocating the MSI dollars towards this project, which is typically used for Town infrastructure such as roads, with the understanding that funding for the roads program will come from the Federal Gas Tax Fund dollars the Town receives annually and will be more than adequate to administer any roads infrastructure needed in the future.
Government of Alberta Backgrounder on the Project
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Town of Devon Municipal Office
1 Columbia Avenue West
Devon, AB T9G 1A1
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