NDCC Pool Project Buoyed by Federal Gas Tax Grant

The Nelson and District Aquatic Centre renewal project has been granted $4.597 million through the Government of Canada’s Gas Tax Fund—the largest grant the Regional District of Central Kootenay has received in its 50-year history.

The Nelson and District Aquatic Centre was a modern facility when it was built in 1972 but pool and mechanical systems are now well past their expected service life. The RDCK needs to complete critical upgrades to the pool area as well as to mechanical, electrical and chemical loading systems to extend the life of aquatic centre into the coming decades.

“To say we’re very, very pleased about receiving this grant is an understatement,” said Stuart Horn, Chief Administrative Officer for the RDCK. “I know the board, recreation commission and our staff were all thrilled to hear that we received a large enough grant to cover nearly all our renovation costs.”

"The importance of this grant to recreation in our region cannot be overstated,” said Valerie Warmington, Chair of the Nelson and District Recreation Commission. “Trying to maintain aging infrastructure in a situation without adequate reserves from which to draw has often meant that important work has been deferred or simply not done. This funding partnership with the Government of Canada and the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) ensures that we are now in a much better position to undertake critical upgrades immediately while also saving to effectively manage our critical recreation assets into the future."

The grant will cover the majority of the project costs to renew the facility; the total budget, including all planning, design, construction management and renovations is $5.32 million. The district is contributing $723,000 and will not be borrowing to finance the project.

The district will use the opportunity to make strategic decisions to enhance the project, such as installing heat recovery, to help ensure the long term viability of the NDCC Aquatic Centre and will contribute to financial reserves to ensure that the service is viable over the long term.

The aquatic centre closed in October 2015 for renovations and is expected to reopen to the public in 11 months.

Quotes from the Government of Canada:
"Through the federal Gas Tax Fund, the Government of Canada is allowing communities in BC, and all across Canada, to make informed decisions about their infrastructure investments and how best to spend federal dollars. Community officials are best positioned to identify their specific needs, and the federal Gas Tax fund supports them in making those strategic investments. These 57 projects will contribute to building the strong, inclusive and sustainable communities Canadians desire to live in."
Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

"These funds will help support the construction of infrastructure improvements that will provide a better standard of living for residents in communities all across B.C. I’m pleased to say that local governments throughout the province are receiving more than $69 million in funding for 27 capital projects through the Federal Ga s Tax Fund, which is administered by the Union of British Columbia Municipalities and provided by the Government of Canada."
Honourable Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development

"The federal Gas Tax Fund is helping local governments accelerate their capital investment plans. These investments will support improved levels of service for facilities in communities throughout BC. The 189 local governments that we represent appreciate the ongoing commitment of the Government of Canada to improving local infrastructure. We are also pleased with the valued support provided by the Province of British Columbia to deliver this program."
Al Richmond, President, Union of BC Municipalities

Government of Canada Quick Facts:
•The total federal Gas Tax Fund contribution towards the 57 projects is $73,389,257.
 - The 27 capital projects are receiving a total of $69,174,890.
 - The 30 capacity building projects are receiving a total of $4,214,367.
• The total estimated project costs for all 57 projects are about $98 million.
• The funding provided for these projects comes through the application based Strategic Priorities Fund of the Federal Gas Tax Fund in BC
• The Government of Canada provides over $253 million in indexed annual funding for municipal infrastructure in British Columbia through the federal Gas Tax Fund. The majority of this funding is allocated to municipalities, who decide which projects will address their local priorities. Municipalities can spend, pool, bank or use their annual allocation to finance loans related to eligible infrastructure or capacity building projects.
• The Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) administers the Gas Tax Fund in BC, in partnership with Canada and British Columbia.

Click here to view the Government of Canada announcement.

Click here to view the Government of Canada Backgrounder.


Click here to view NDCC Aquatic Centre Renewal Project FAQ. 

For more information:
Joe Chirico

General Manager of Community Services






Stuart Horn

Chief Administrative Officer





The content on this page was last updated February 12 2016 at 11:33 AM