February 19, 2013

Poilievre Announces Funding for Fred Barrett Arena
MP and city officials say improvements will increase the facility’s accessibility

Findlay Creek, ON —Across the country, community centres, ice rinks, swimming pools and other community projects will soon be improved thanks to support from the Federal Government’s Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund (CIIF). Pierre Poilievre, MP for Nepean-Carleton, went to the Fred Barrett Arena to announce funding for its upgrade. He was joined by Mayor Jim Watson, Councillors Steve Desroches and Mark Taylor, Ottawa Rotary Home representatives Sarah Gilkes and Olivia Thomas and their client Eric Bourns.

Under the CIIF, Poilievre announced $185,500 in federal funding to enhance accessibility at the facility. “Our Government, through the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, is demonstrating its continued support for communities across Canada. We are committed to working with municipalities so that public facilities like this one do not preclude people with disabilities from participating in community events,” said Poilievre. “The Fred Barrett Arena is a gathering point for people in Findlay Creek and beyond. These improvements will ensure that the facility is accessible to all, even if they use a wheelchair like Mr. Bourns.”

The total cost of the project is projected to be $371,000, with the City of Ottawa covering the remaining $185,500. The work will include retrofitting washrooms and change rooms to meet accessibility standards, adding power doors, and lowering wall switches to meet current regulations.

“The Fred G. Barrett Arena, formerly the Leitrim Arena, was opened in 1969. While it has had improvements and updates over the years, we welcome this opportunity to remove any remaining barriers to full accessibility, making this City of Ottawa facility fully usable by everyone who might want to access its recreational facilities and other areas,” said Deputy Mayor Steve Desroches, Councillor of Gloucester-South Nepean.

“We believe that it is our responsibility to raise awareness in the community on issues surrounding people with disabilities” said Ms. Gilkes, Program Lead, Adult Services, of the Ottawa Rotary Home. “Today’s announcement is another step to improving the lives of the individuals we support, ensuring that they have access to community facilities.”

“We want to make sure that all individuals and families can enjoy City services, programs and facilities in their communities,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “Our funding partners at FedDev Ontario are helping the City meet this commitment through enhancing accessibility at six of our recreational facilities in 2013.”

Through the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, the Government of Canada is committed to supporting communities and creating jobs through repairs and improvements to existing community facilities over the next two years. The national CIIF will provide $150 million to existing public community infrastructure, and is being delivered by regional development agencies across Canada. The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) is delivering the Fund in Ontario, with an allocation of up to $49.6 million.

(L to R) Councillor Mark Taylor, Mayor Jim Watson, Ottawa Rotary Home client Eric Bourns, MP Pierre Poilievre, Councillor Steve Desroches

(L to R) Councillor Mark Taylor, Mayor Jim Watson, Ottawa Rotary Home client Eric Bourns, MP Pierre Poilievre, Councillor Steve Desroches