About $200,000 has been donated for the revitalization of the Sarnia Arena — roughly half of what the city is hoping to receive, said Sarnia’s manager of recreation and planning.
“We’re still out there looking for donations, and certainly happy to accept,” said Ryan Chamney.
A third of the project’s funds are coming from a Canada 150 community grant, with the rest coming from the Parks and Recreation Capital envelope and donations from the community.
Chamney said they hope to raise a third of the project total from the community offerings, but even if they don’t, the project will proceed.
The arena renovation is one of 11 city projects seeking donations.
“Anytime we have projects that have some outside funding, it certainly helps get them off the ground and moving forward,” said Chamney.
So far, work on the roof of the 77-year-old arena was completed, followed by AODA compliant restrooms and major improvements to the lighting over the ice surface.
Next phase is the front lobby. Forest-based Wellington Builders won the $1.07 million contract. According to the city, most of the work should be complete by end of April.
“We’re trying not to displace or interrupt any of our programming, and that’s why we’re waiting actually until after the Silver Stick tournament,” said Trevor Sanderson, the city’s arenas manager.
Walls, counters, floors and the old ticket booth are being pulled out and replaced, and well as the doors to the front entrance and north and south lobby space.
When complete, the lobby of the venerable arena will have a new conversation area and seating, as well as an upgraded heating system.
To contribute to any of Sarnia’s projects, visit www.sarniacommunityfoundation.ca, or in person at City Hall.