sportsplex concept drawing

Tecumseh Town Council held a Special Meeting this evening to receive a report on the Updated Design, Costing, Funding and Fundraising for the Multi-Use Sportsplex. Representatives from the Town’s Consultant, CS&P Architects were on hand to present their detailed costing of several options to Council and answer questions. The report followed the January 2019 presentation and includes changes to the draft design resulting from extensive consultations with user groups as directed by Council at that meeting. The report was prepared in anticipation of the Town applying to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP), Community, Culture & Recreation stream expected to be open soon for applications.

Based on the report and discussion, Council approved moving forward with Option A for the Multi-Use Sportsplex with Fundraising Option 1.

“This is a major project we have been working toward for almost five years now,” said Gary McNamara, Mayor of Tecumseh. “Tonight we saw the full details on costs, funding options and what we need to do to make this a reality. I have been discussing this project with federal and provincial representatives and we are very hopeful that our grant application will be successful and we can move this project forward.”

As part of the report, Administration provided the option presented in January, 2019 which is identified as the base option as well as three additional design options featuring a scaled down exterior finish as well as changes in the interior fabrication (Option A); an option with reduced program space (Option B); and, a third option which would remove the gymnasium (Option C). All options involve replacing the Hebert Ball Field at McAuliffe Park. The proposed partnership with Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare (HDGH) to establish a cardio rehab centre as part of the project is not included in the project costing. Costs associated with the cardio rehab centre would be the responsibility of HDGH. Council authorized staff to negotiate with HDGH and return to Council with further details on this component.

The detailed cost estimates of the facility range from $42.65 million to $60.4 million. These costs are substantially higher than the original cost estimate based on the original concept presented in 2016. Changes in cost are attributed to:

  • Original estimate was for single phase construction, minimal impact to existing building, building operations, or site modifications
  • Space Programme tallies for more clearly defined needs and floor area requirements have been revised significantly
    • Double Gym rather than single
    • Running track mezzanine in Gym
    • Increased area for support spaces
    • Increased circulation space to suit increased area
  • Design has developed to include more integration with the existing building, including full new entry area
  • Soccer Hall has included more versatile structure for potential of other uses (concrete slab under the artificial turf)
  • More detailed information for the site development costs
  • Costs are refined to address regional Essex county factors
  • Recent material increases due to international trade tariffs (steel and aluminum particularly)
  • Escalation for construction cost increases since 2016
  • Canadian/US Dollar shifts (interior furnishings & most of steel is supplied through US)
  • Specialty trade for the large span assemblies

How the Multi-Use Sportsplex will be funded was an important part of the discussion at the meeting. Under the ICIP program, projects are eligible for 73% grant funding, leaving 27% to be funded locally. Town share costs are proposed to be funded using a combination of Federal Gas Tax, debt and fundraising proceeds. Accounting for debt and operations of the facility, the anticipated impact on the tax rate ranges from .66 to 1.87% in the first year depending on the option. Council has agreed that staff should proceed with the ICIP application based on Option A, which is expected to garner a 1.43% tax impact if the ICIP application is successful. In the event that the application is not successful, staff will return to Council for further direction.

Fundraising is expected to raise $4 million towards the Town’s share of project costs and Council has approved moving forward with a fundraising program run by a fundraising committee, citizen based with a community Champion to lead the committee with staff support.