At a special Burlington City Council meeting today (Aug. 4), we approved awarding Norlon Builders London Ltd. the tender to go ahead with the planned upgrades for the Skyway Community Centre and Park.
Click here for the staff report (Tender Award – EICS 22-35 Skyway Community Centre) and see below the full motion we approved by a 6-1 majority vote:
Award the Request for Tender (RFT) EICS-22-35 for Skyway Community Centre to Norlon Builders London Limited for $37,021,769.55 including H.S.T. (13%) and provisional item(s);
Authorize the Manager of Procurement Services to issue an internal purchase order to the bidder named above;
Approve the revised total budget of $39,433,100 (Net H.S.T.) with revised financing proposed as recommended in the report EICS-15-22;
Authorize the additional funding of $2,000,000 from Tax Supported Debt, $403,000 from the Corporate Accessibility Implementation Project (BD0058) and $4,710,100 from the infrastructure renewal reserve fund;
Authorize the City Clerk to prepare the debenture and by-law;
Authorize the Mayor and City Clerk to sign any required agreements, subject to the City Solicitor as to form.
I’m very excited that we’re taking the next step for this new community centre, and really looking forward to the ground-breaking in October 2022.
This project has been in our plans for many years and was identified by this term of Council as our top priority — and we know it is a priority for our residents.
We know we need more community facilities of this nature for our community and city, as a whole. Our parks and amenities have not kept up with the growth of our city and this centre will be one more opportunity to renew and expand what was there before.
We know this will be well-used and well-loved by residents across Burlington, whether it be the expanded NHL-sized ice rink, the community spaces (where we can offer more pickleball opportunities, for example), the walking track or community meeting spaces.
The design of this centre represents how we’ll be building community centres for the future, with environmental impacts in mind. This is a low-carbon building with sun panels on the roof, for example.
We recognize the concern about the increased costs, due to factors out of our hands as a City and Council, and affecting businesses across the globe. The time is now, however, to move forward — delays will only further increase costs.
When it comes to finances, we always need to make sure we are prudent in our spending, and focus on priorities like this one. It’s also important to remember we have a number of options to fund major capital project like this, outside of debt, reserves (that we add funding to each year), or tax increases. We have recently increased development charges and parkland dedication, so that growth-related costs contribute more to facilities required to sustain a growing population. We also have user fees, and we can continue to seek funding from upper levels of government.
In short, if we’re going to spend any dime of residents’ tax dollars, it should be on community-enhancing facilities — like Skyway — that will be a benefit to everyone who lives here, both now and in the future.
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The existing Skyway Arena is a 22,000 square foot building originally constructed in 1974. Previous staff reports spoke to the demand for ice and the community interest in a multipurpose recreational facility in the southeast Burlington.
As a Council, we chose to proceed with an enhanced design of Skyway Arena that included an NHL size rink, six
(6) dressing rooms, cold and warm viewing areas and two (2) community rooms with a walking track and to be designed and built to be a low-carbon facility.
The building permit has been approved and project is scheduled to commence October 1, 2022 — this was contingent on Council approving the revised project budget and overall financing proposal presented within the staff report labelled EICS-15-22.
The Skyway Community Centre project received three compliant bids. The lowest compliant bid creates a funding shortfall of $7.11 million compared to the total project budget that was approved in April 2022 (EICS-03-22) of $32.3 million. As per the Financial Matters section of the report linked further up this post, staff recommended the additional amount of funding be provided from tax supported debt of $2 million, $4.7 million from the City’s infrastructure renewal reserve fund and $0.4 million from capital order BD0058, Corporate Accessibility Implementation Project.
Staff recommended the request for tender (RFT) be awarded to Norlon Builders London Limited in the amount of $37,021,769.55 including H.S.T for the construction of the New Skyway Community Centre and Park. This project incorporates significant service enhancements as requested by the community during the public engagement process. Access to ice and floor sports as well as indoor community rooms and walking track facilities will be critical to serve this area of the City and support its residents.