Sports facilities cash in on Canada Games funding - Metro US

Sports facilities cash in on Canada Games funding

Sports facilities were skiing, skating and swimming all the way to the bank Monday.

The 2011 Canada Winter Games committee announced where it would be doling out $15 million of capital funding for the Halifax games.

Ski hills were the biggest winners. Ski Martock and Ski Wentworth got $4.2 million and $3.2 million, respectively. That’ll go towards new snow-making equipment, improved trails, moguls and a super half-pipe.

Hills will be able to make snow about twice as fast as they currently can for the games, and for years afterwards.

“You can open more (runs) earlier. And that’s really what’s required for games like these,” said Martock operations manager Andy MacLean.

“It means we’re going to produce and provide a lot more for our athletes.”

Other big winners included the Mainland Common Centre, which will host gymnastic events; the Halifax Forum, which will host boxing; and the St. Margaret’s Centre, which got money to extend its rink to Olympic-size, for speed and figure skating.

The funding is just part of the 2011 Games’ total $46-million budget, and comes from all three levels of government. The event will also need to raise about $11 million of its own money through sponsorship, merchandise and ticket sales.

“Hosting the games is an opportunity to showcase the beauty, talent and culture of Nova Scotia,” said Health Promotion and Protection Minister Pat Dunn.

“These games will leave behind a rich legacy of sports facilities and enhance sports programming. The upgrades to the ski hills alone will allow Nova Scotia to see ski events they have never seen before.”

The games will also require about 5,000 volunteers, the most ever for a Nova Scotia sporting event.

Halifax lacks a long-track speed skating arena, so a temporary one will built on the Halifax Common at a cost of $696,000.

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