About $9 million worth of repairs and improvements to the Canada Games Aquatic Centre will go before city council on Tuesday.
Of that amount, $5.7 million would be borrowed by the city if it is successful in receiving money from the federal Community Works Fund and the provincial CleanBC Communities Fund.
The proposal from staff is meant to address aging infrastructure and make the facility more energy efficient.
The pool, which predates the Tournament Capital Centre in which it now sits, was built in 1992. City staff say the facility has been well-maintained, but the building envelope and mechanical, electrical, heating and ventilation systems are nearing or past their life expectancies.
The repairs are expected to begin in late 2020 after the 55+ Games are held at the venue.
City sustainability supervisor Glen Cheetham said the infrastructure work provides an opportunity to make the facility more energy-efficient.
“There is a need to make some improvements to the Canada Games Aquatic Centre, its various systems like its walls, its roof structures and its mechanical systems,” he said.
“And so the city has pursued this [provincial] funding to help support doing measures that go above and beyond the code requirements for a project like this and to try to use technologies that are available to really improve the energy- efficiency.”
Cheetham said the facility is responsible for 10 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions linked to municipal operations. The upgrades are expected to improve the facility’s efficiency by between 25 and 50 per cent. One improvement is heat recovery. Pools are humid and require air circulation to manage humidity and prevent damage to the building’s structure and mechanical systems.
“Conventionally, you’re venting a lot of air out of the pool and with that air goes a lot of heat,” Cheetham said. “There is opportunity to capture that heat and put it back into the pool system so that you’re still addressing your ventilation requirements without wasting energy.”
Financing includes little more than a third of federal and provincial funds, with $2.9 million earmarked from the federal Community Works Fund, money given to municipalities twice annually for various projects, as well as an application submitted recently to the province for $458,000 from the CleanBC Communities Fund.
The city could hear back in the next few months on whether it will receive that grant funding. The city proposes funding the remaining $5.7 million through debt.
Staff are asking council to authorize on Tuesday support for the project.