BY RYAN WELLICOME
Lacombe City council added the Civic Centre Development Plan to its Ten Year Capital Plan during the regular meeting this past Monday.
During the meeting, Engineering Services Manager Jordan Thompson presented a feasibility study, completed by Manasc Isaac to determine development action for the Provincial Building on 50 Ave. and 51 St.
“I think it’s great to get it on the Ten Year Capital Plan so we can start discussing some of these other options,” said Lacombe Mayor Steve Christie. “This ties into our Municipal Sustainability Plan with maintaining our downtown as well as our Downtown Area Redevelopment Plan with getting more traffic and civic presence downtown,” he said.
“This is a first step of many to go.”
The report recommended three options of action: renovation of current facilities, a new build of the facilities and a hybrid of the two.
“Administration considers the hybrid option to be the superior choice in terms of accommodating future growth while providing opportunities for community partnership and preservation of the heritage value of the original building. As such, it is administration’s recommendation for council to consider including the addition of the hybrid option in the Ten Year Capital Plan during its October budget deliberations,” said Thompson.
The City purchased the building from Alberta Infrastructure last October for just over $1 million securing a downtown space for municipal use.
The building still houses a community health care centre run by Alberta Health Services and some non-profit organization offices.
Councillor Peter Bouwsema concurred that he thought the hybrid option seemed best but offered some modifications.
“I can see where this is going to be definitely a viable option,” said Bouwsema. “I have a strong hunch that there could be efficiencies created and there could be the potential of even doing a smaller edition than what is being proposed.
“A hybrid of the hybrid.”
He also expressed that he was pleased council was considering saving the building from demolition because of its historical value.
“I am very happy to know that we (council) are considering saving the building even though we normally consider our downtown to have that Edwardian appearance,” he said.
Bouwsema made the motion to accept the development plan into the Ten Year Capital Plan and it was carried unanimously.
As the Civic Centre Development Plan is now part of the City’s Ten Year Capital Plan, development of the building will be considered in the City’s 2017 budget deliberations.