Under three years to go for the Canada Winter Games

  • Feb. 17, 2016 3:38 p.m.

Monday marked three years before the 2019 Canada Winter Games comes to Central Alberta.

Last week, officials continued to gain momentum by announcing a new partnership with NOVA Chemicals.

A number of dignitaries were on hand at the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame last Wednesday when it was revealed that NOVA Chemicals had committed to a $2 million joint partnership with Red Deer College and the 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society.

The new partnership will provide support for the 2019 Canada Games Host Society and the construction of the Gary W. Harris Centre for Health, Wellness & Sport on Red Deer College’s main campus.

“We are excited to partner with Red Deer College and the 2019 Canada Winter Games to present the best of Central Alberta to the nation in 2019 under a shared theme of sustainability,” said NOVA Chemicals Manufacturing Director, Western Canada, Rick Van Hemmen. “At NOVA Chemicals we are actively engaged in a sustainability journey and are passionate about demonstrating our commitment through a broad range of company initiatives. We are pleased to participate and share our thoughts and ideas as a community builder, sustainability leader and partner.”

The major contribution will be divided equally, with $1 million supporting the construction of the Gary W. Harris Centre for Health, Wellness & Sport and $1 million as a ‘pillar sponsor’ of the 2019 Canada Games.

The City of Red Deer was awarded the 2019 Canada Games in September 2014, creating an opportunity for organizations, governments and community partners to show the best of Red Deer to the nation. As the largest multi-sport event for youth in Canada, more than 3,600 athletes from across Canada will compete for gold in 19 sports during the 2019 Canada Winter Games. With a forecasted economic impact of more than $132 million, the 2019 Games will be the largest multi-sport event to be hosted in Alberta in nearly three decades.

“With just over three years until the 2019 Canada Winter Games, we are pleased to welcome NOVA Chemicals as the Sustainability Pillar Sponsor of the 2019 Games,” said Lyn Radford, board chair of the 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society. “This unique partnership embodies the spirit of giving and enthusiasm that Central Alberta is known for. With the support of NOVA Chemicals, the 2019 Games will leave a legacy of sustainability that will create lasting positive environmental, social and economic benefits that will remain in our community long after the 2019 Games.

“We have a huge sustainability program that is going to be happening with the Games. We are going to look at leaving as little of a footprint as we can with the Games. We want to leave a little impact, but a positive impact. This includes any of our building projects and making sure that they are at some sort of LEED standard; we’ll also be looking at having programs in conjunction with Red Deer College that will help teach our next generation about sustainability.”

The Gary W. Harris Centre for Health, Wellness & Sport will host a number of events in the 2019 Games and will also play a role in the future of RDC, complete with teaching and learning spaces that will support students and programs primarily in RDC’s School of Health Sciences.

The Gary W. Harris Centre for Health, Wellness & Sport is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2018, with an estimated cost of $88 million, funded through a combination of donations, partnerships and government funding.