There is a crucial meeting this evening in Morell, which will likely determine if there is public will to continue with plans for a Northside Health and Recreation Centre. Area residents are being asked to give directions to a steering committee which has been busy for almost three years planning for a facility to replace the aging Morell Community Arena.
The initiative, dubbed Project 2014, has drawn lots of attention with its involvement with the last two Morell Sportsman’s Dinners and the recent Kraft/TSN Hockeyville event.
The four key communities involved are St. Peters, Morell, Mount Stewart and St. Teresa but also extends into neighbouring areas. The steering committee, chaired by Don MacAdam, will reveal the business plan to replace the Morell rink with a multifunction recreational facility which will be more than just an ice rink. It will also contain commercial, health and social aspects as well.
The committee will seek a consensus on which of three options to pursue — will support, will support with amendments or will not support.
The key questions on the minds of everyone are what the facility will look like, the cost and how it will be paid for. The new Evangeline Recreation Centre was used as a reference point for the northside facility.
There will have to be a major corporate fundraising campaign, and sizable funding agreements with the provincial and federal governments to finance the $6.825-million capital plan if there is any hope to continue.