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New Hazelton’s community hall gets grant

Money will be put towards renovating vacant building and opening by end of year.
The District of New Hazelton has bought a vacant building to turn into a new community hall. The current Lion’s Hall isn’t worth fixing up. Cassidy Muir photo

Construction on New Hazelton’s new community centre will start soon.

Recently, the District purchased the vacant building where the Fields store used to be with big plans to fix it up.

Previously, Mayor Gail Lowry said the area is in dire need of a new space for community gatherings.

“There is the old Lion’s Hall but it is a very old building and it needs a lot of work,” she said. “It isn’t worth fixing.”

According to a press release from the Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDI), it was discovered upon inspection that the extent of repairs far exceeded the assessed value of the Lion’s hall building and that another facility at a different location would be a more feasible option for the community.

The District of New Hazelton has received $215,014 in approved funding from NDI’s Economic Diversification Infrastructure program anyway.

The District’s chief financial officer Robyn Carle said the project cost is $360,421.48 for the renovation of the building and this grant will cover 60 per cent of the total project cost.

The District has been putting $100,000 aside each year for the last five years towards a new community centre.

“After the purchase of the building we still have around $100,000 remaining in that fund,” added Carle. “We will use this and money from our surplus to cover the remaining cost of the project.”

According to NDI, the new community centre will help to provide the community of New Hazelton with many revenue generation opportunities and a new gathering space for community members.

Construction is set to wrap up in the fall, with the hall ready to be used before the end of the year.

Marisca Bakker

About the Author: Marisca Bakker

Marisca was born and raised in Ontario and moved to Smithers almost ten years ago on a one-year contract.
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