Phase three of Genesis Place to be completed by 2013
Get your skates shined up.
Ice users in Airdrie are finally getting what they want: more ice time.
A ground-breaking celebration was held on April 13 to announce that phase three of Genesis Place – consisting of twin arenas – is underway. The project is expected to be completed by the summer 2013.
“We need a place for our young people, our children, our youth and even the adults to get together and have a vocal point for the community,” said Jack Lumley, president of the Airdrie Regional Recreation Enhancement Society (ARRES). “Genesis Place and all it has to offer is the perfect spot for these new twin arenas to complete that package. The city has grown so much in the 20 years since we built our last ice surface that we have absolutely outgrown the facilities that we’ve got today.”
Lumley said they have more than 150 people on the waiting list for the Airdrie Skating Club and that interest in hockey has grown 40 per cent over the last three years, creating a need for more ice in Airdrie – a city of about 45,000 people with three arenas.
He said the plan is for phase three to be completed by summer of 2013, consisting of twin arenas with 350 seats of viewing area on each side and offices and boardrooms on the second floor.
He said ARRES’ goal is to fundraise $4 million of the $16 million the project will cost. Sponsors, so far, are Shane Homes, Boston Pizza, A&W and AECON.
“On behalf of my family and the crew of employees at Boston Pizza, we are always looking to put back in the community that supports us day-to-day, it’s never a question of ‘when’ and ‘can we’, it’s always yes,” said Kip Lindsay, representative for Boston Pizza.
“We’re more than happy to be back out here supporting ARRES and supporting Airdrie again, with the expansion of phase three of the ice rinks,” said Shane Wenzel, representative for sponsor Shane Homes.
It was announced that Wenzel purchased the naming rights for one of the ice surfaces to be called the Shane Homes arena, committing to $350,000.
Manager of Genesis Place Greg Lockert said phase three will be 120,000 square feet, adding to the 190,000 square footprint of the existing building.
“Hopefully, it won’t be too much of an affect on existing operations,” said Lockert.
“As our numbers (of hockey players) continue to grow, we’re going to see more of a need for ice time,” said Tim Kehoe, representative for Airdrie Minor Hockey.
Representatives from the Airdrie Skating Club were also excited about the additional ice surfaces.
“For the Airdrie Skating Club, what these new ice surfaces will mean is that hopefully we won’t have parents lining up at 5 a.m. to get a spot in our program. Hopefully, it means we won’t have to go to parents standing in the line and say ‘please, register your child for just one day, not two,’” said Teree Hokanson, representative for the Airdrie Skating Club.
Airdrie Mayor Peter Brown said phase three will benefit Airdrie on so many different levels as it supports community need and creates opportunities.
“Congratulations to everyone involved in the process, it’s finally here,” said Brown. “We build things in this community that become assets of the community.”
“These two new rinks are adding value to our community,” he added.