Memorial Arena is aged out of its service is deemed too old to keep. (Brennan Phillips Western News)

Memorial Arena is aged out of its service is deemed too old to keep. (Brennan Phillips Western News)

Have your say on the fate of Penticton’s most iconic civic buildings

City is asking for feedback on Memorial and McLaren arenas, library, art gallery, Leir House

If you want to have your say on the fate of Penticton aging buildings like Memorial and McLaren arenas, the library and museum, you have three weeks to give the city feedback.

The city is now collecting feedback on the recommendations made by consultants in the Civic Places and Spaces Asset and Amenity Management Plan.

Over the past month, staff hosted more than 20 events to raise awareness of the recommendations made about the $300 million worth of buildings. Residents will now have the next three weeks to share their views.

“The recommendations are conceptual at this point and we have heard a wide range of feedback so far,” said the city’s general manager of community services Anthony Haddad.

“With the feedback gathered through this process, staff will suggest recommendations on how we can move forward and how prioritization of the renewal of these important community facilities should take place over the coming years,” said Haddad. “The development of detailed proposals specific to each future facility will then be developed, including working with user groups and continuing with the significant engagement required on these priorities to inform council’s decisions.”

Many of Penticton’s most iconic facilities are aging out but still hold sentimental value to many like Memorial Arena which is said to be too old and expensive to keep.

READ MORE: Memorial Arena deemed too old to keep

The recommendations made by consultants Colliers Project Leaders included selling off Penticton Art Gallery to make a large arts and cultural centre to house the gallery, library and museum at a different location.

The library and museum are also in need of demolition, said the report.

The art gallery is in a prime location near the beach and would fetch top dollar if sold, said the consultant.

Here are some of the recommendations in the Civic Places and Spaces:

1. Create a new arts and cultural centre to house the Penticton Art Gallery, library and museum all at a new location. Sell all the buildings they currently occupy to cover the costs of new construction.

2. Demolish both Memorial and McLaren arenas and build a new twin-rinks facility in a more central location, closer to South Okanagan Events Centre. Sell McLaren Arena and turn the Memorial Arena site into parking.

3. Replace Fire Hall No. 1 and house bylaw services, community policing and Penticton’s emergency operations centre there.

4. Leir House will be leased at commercial rates. Cleland Theatre’s audiovisual equipment will be upgraded and enter into an operating agreement. This will support reinvestment into the SOEC being the entertainment hub.

The feedback form is available online at shapeyourcitypenticton.ca from now through to end of day Nov. 25.

Registration is not required to complete the form and participation is anonymous. Paper copies are also available at the Library, City Hall and the Community Centre.