Plans to resurface the running track in Stettler may go ahead if a municipal partnership can be reached.
Clearview Public Schools is looking to partner with the Town and County of Stettler to each cost share a third of the project. Cost estimates are listed at $370,000, with a contingency of up to $450,000.
To help pay for this, Clearview has earmarked $150,000 of I.M.R funding this year. This funding is normally used for building upgrades, but the province has given permission to use it for the running track. If it’s not used for this within the next few years, there are worries it may be clawed back.
In hopes of proceeding, Clearview representatives made a presentation to the Town of Stettler during their March 6 meeting.
Associate Superintendent Peter Neale explained, “We are reaching out to our municipal partners to seek a cost sharing agreement, as the total cost would make it difficult for any of our organizations to handle on their own.”
Council heard that the track was constructed in 1990, ahead of the 1991 Alberta Summer Games. Initially it came with a 15 year lifespan, but has lasted for 26 years thanks to recent patchwork. As the current track is not rubberized, it can no longer hold provincial high school track meets.
After taking a look at four different choices for resurfacing, Clearview is recommending a $370,000 option. This would cover removing the current surface, rebuilding the under layer, as well as a small layer of new asphalt on the foundation.
Blue styrofoam blocks around the outside of the track would also be installed to prevent frost damage. Then a surface made of recycled rubber would be placed on top of the asphalt.
Clearview has also contracted an engineer to take core samples of the foundation. These reports say the foundation is still in good shape, meaning it does not need to be replaced.
The Town of Stettler passed a motion to support the capital resurfacing of the running track in principle, so long as there is an equitable funding partnership with Clearview. Councillors wanted it worded this way so the County is not bound to the decision without first discussing it at their table.
During the County’s March 14 meeting, a motion was passed to find dates for a delegation from Clearview to present. This may happen at the County’s regular meeting on April 11, as councillors wanted to speak to the division about concerns from bus drivers on County roads.
Initial plans to renovate the running track were sidelined last year in favour of upgrades to the football field. The thought was if the field were to be upgraded after the running track, the new track could be damaged while sod was being replaced.
Discussions on this project have also been going on at the Town and County’s Shared-Use Recreation Facility SURF Planning Committee.