Renovations to the Talisman Centre’s mechanical, electrical, lighting and lockers rooms were given a $1-million boost by the federal government yesterday.
The cash bolsters the already-announced $45-million pool for upgrades, which are set to begin on the massive athletic complex Jan. 1, 2010, according to centre officials.
Calgary Centre MP Lee Richardson announced the funds are provided under the recreational Infrastructure Canada (RInC) Program.
“This critical investment will help put Canadians to work (and) encourage greater participation in physical activity and use of recreational facilities,” he said in a statement.
Talisman Centre president Robin Mitchell said the additional funds will help the centre undergo other necessary enhancements. “We’re really excited about the opportunities this funding has given us, and we couldn’t be more grateful,” Mitchell said.
“By the end of this construction project, Talisman Centre will truly be among the best sports facilities in North America.”
Although the excitement of renovations is key, the Talisman Centre will have to close its aquatics side on Jan. 1, followed by the running track, gym and cardio side afterwards. But officials say the renovations will be worth it in the long run.
However, Kalli Negrave, who swims at the centre, thinks the facility is already up to snuff, and doesn’t see the need for such upgrades.
“I don’t know why they would spend that much money to fix up something that already seems pretty good,” she said.
Negrave said she will find other, less expensive pools to swim in around the city while the renovations are being completed.