RUSSELL TOWNSHIP – Upon receiving large-scale funding assistance from the provincial and federal governments, the Township of Russell council is setting their eyes on a Cadillac-style recreation complex.

Russell Township Mayor Pierre Leroux and the rest of the council members want to take quick advantage of the chance for funding from the Canada Infrastructure Program to propose a multi-use recreation facility.

Back on June 4, a report was presented to council concerning the recreation complex, to determine the next steps council would like to see in a future report. Direction was given by council to administration staff to present another information report and consultant report outlining the next steps for the recreation complex; including the timelines to present the options with combinations of facilities, a revised site plan and financial strategies.

A special meeting was held Tues., Aug. 20 to present all the information that was requested.

The Master Plan for the Township of Russell that was prepared for council provided a comprehensive, multi- year framework of short (1-2 years), medium (3-6 years) and longer-term (7 and plus years) priorities for the development of indoor and outdoor recreation opportunities, services and facilities in the area.

Pillars of the Master Plan included developing and renewing infrastructures, fostering healthy communities, growing economic development, increasing financial sustainability and promoting service effectiveness. Council reviewed the report that showed different options that the recreation centre could feature including an auditorium, a six-lane indoor pool, an arena with one to three NHL-sized ice pads and other various support features.

The estimated cost projections for these options ranges from $33.7-million to $52.7-million; these costs depend on which option the council and residents decide is the most affordable and/or desirable.

Council asked the consultants to continue planning work based on all the options that were presented in the report. They authorized the administration to review the Canada Infrastructure guidelines for a new information report to be presented at the next council meeting on Mon., Sept. 3 to discuss what else might be needed to submit a funding application for the project.

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