The governments of Canada and Manitoba announced funding for 15 culture and recreation infrastructure projects in Manitoba’s rural and northern communities.

In Brandon, funding will go to the construction of an Outdoor Sports Complex, consisting of 10 soccer fields, including one FIFA-size field with lighting and bleachers, additional fields constructed to allow for multiple sport uses like ultimate frisbee, a clubhouse with washrooms and change rooms, a maintenance garage and parking, as well as green spaces for events and picnics.

The Dood Cristall Family YMCA will be expanded to include a new fitness studio and functional fitness spaces, to provide capacity for youth programming, including summer camps, and to facilitate additional memberships and community participation. The expansion will also accommodate 34 new child-care spaces.

“This is an extremely exciting and welcomed project for our community,” said Brandon Mayor Rick Chrest. “When completed it will provide recreation and sport opportunities for many age groups on a grand scale and will also be an economic catalyst through the hosting of tournaments and larger events.”

In Flin Flon, funding will build a new Community Aqua Centre and Recreational Facility to replace the former facility, which was closed in 2020 due to structural concerns. The new energy-efficient facility will increase and improve community programs and recreational activities, encouraging residents to swim, train, and stay healthy.

“This investment in our community and region cannot be undersold. It is so important not only to the character of our city, but the safety and health as well,” said Flin Flon Mayor Cal Huntley.

The Government of Canada is investing more than $13.6 million in the 15 projects announced today through the Rural and Northern Communities Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. For projects requiring consultations with Indigenous groups, funding is conditional on consultation requirements being met. The government of Manitoba is funding over $9.5 million. Project recipients are also contributing approximately $14.6 million toward eligible project costs for their respective projects.

“Together with the Province, municipalities, and project funding recipients, we’re building back better and providing residents with modern, safe, and accessible places to learn, grow, and enjoy leisure activities,” said Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Western Economic Diversification Canada).

“The Manitoba government continues to invest in recreational infrastructure for the betterment of our communities,” added Reg Helwer, Manitoba’s Minister of Central Services. “This investment in cultural and recreation infrastructure will inspire learning and growth and is key to creating healthy communities.”

Featured image: The conceptual development plan for a new Brandon outdoor sports field complex drawn up by MNP and HTFC Planning and Design. (City of Brandon)

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