People of all ages will soon have more opportunities to be active and new places to gather thanks to a new community centre in East Dartmouth. Health Promotion Minister Rodney MacDonald announced today, Sept. 21, a provincial investment of $1.1 million toward the $3.3-million centre. “The people of East Dartmouth have shown their dedication by working together to realize their dream of a new community centre,” said Mr. MacDonald. “We’re proud to be part of this project that will create the community focal point residents have been looking for — a place to be active, meet, and build spirit.” The 20,000-square-foot centre will have a number of physical activity and community spaces including meeting rooms, a multi-purpose room suitable for basketball, volleyball and special events, and office space for community organizations and services. “We’ve been working for some time on this project and are very pleased that the minister has made this announcement,” said Simon Gillis, chair of the East Dartmouth Recreation Centre Society. “This will make a tremendous difference — the community has never had a central location to come together and this will serve that purpose.” Mr. Gillis said that one of the highlights of the project is that the new centre will give a permanent home to the East Dartmouth Boys and Girls Club. The club has been without a facility since the late 1990s, although it has continued to provide community-based programs and services to those who needed them. The boys and girls club will manage the centre. With the help of a Health Promotion grant, the East Dartmouth Community Centre Society conducted a demographic assessment, public survey, focus groups and public consultations. The findings indicated a proven need for a new community centre. “Congratulations to the East Dartmouth Recreation Centre Society and Halifax Regional Municipality for their hard work on behalf of their community members,” said Mr. MacDonald. The society hopes the building will be open in 2007.
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