Fort Smith changes, upgrades rec centre renovations

·2 min read

The Town of Fort Smith says it has changed some aspects of ongoing renovations at the town’s recreation centre, resulting in work worth an extra $615,000.

The new spending moves the project from a total cost of $3.6 million to $4.2 million, the town said. The newly commissioned upgrades focus on the childcare centre and seniors’ centre.

According to a news release posted to Facebook, the town approved the changes at a council meeting on February 16.

“The change order is the result of feedback received in the first round of consultations. The design-build process allows for additional small changes in the final stages of construction, based on ongoing public feedback,” the news release states.

Amendments include adding a ceiling to a section of the main floor to create additional space on the second floor, moving the second-floor washrooms, providing better acoustics in the centre, and adding a library book drop.

A childcare centre that was part of the initial renovation plan – and established at the centre in July – will now have a separate entrance and a fenced-in park area.

Changes to the seniors’ room include a retrofitted kitchen, a new entrance, and the addition of a glass atrium.

Last year, council approved a $4-million budget for the project that included $2.5 million from the federal government and $250,000 in territorial funding for the childcare centre.

The renovations already involve moving the library to the second floor of the facility, relocating and enhancing the gym and fitness room, and making heating, cooling and air flow improvements.

The town’s mayor, Lynn Napier, said the changes will create an “all-inclusive one-stop” centre for residents.

“We are very excited to move forward with these renovations," she said in a statement, "which will ensure the community recreation centre can meet Fort Smith’s growing and changing recreational needs for the next 25-30 years."

Sarah Sibley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Cabin Radio