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Geotechnical scanning wraps up for prospective Aqua Centre site

Plans to replace Flin Flon’s now-demolished Aqua Centre are inching ahead once again, with work underway to go over the likely site with a fine-toothed comb.
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File image of a pool.

Plans to replace Flin Flon’s now-demolished Aqua Centre are inching ahead once again, with work underway to go over the likely site with a fine-toothed comb.

Flin Flon Mayor Cal Huntley said at a recent city council meeting that the next step for pool construction was currently underway - a series of geotechnical scans to make sure the likely site for the pool - the former Willow Park Curling Club area - is safe to build on.

“There's been some activity down on the property right now. They're doing the geotechnical work right now to determine whether the site will be appropriate or not, the Willow Park site,” said Huntley.

“We have our site, so we'll just wait to hear how they make out down there. It always seems these projects start around this time of the year, but be that as it may, it's progressing. We're quite pleased about that.”

The City of Flin Flon tendered the design and construction of a pool facility to Winnipeg-based firm Ernst Hansch Construction in November. No financial terms of the agreement were publicly released.

Council members said the company contracted to do the scans has to give results to the City within a certain timeframe of work beginning - a time period of six months was mentioned, though whether that meant six months from the start of 2022 or six months from the start of work was unclear.

“We hope to hear much sooner than that, regarding whether or not that site is appropriate or if it’s not appropriate, because that’s a whole other issue and we would have to do the geotechnical on one of the other preferred sites,” Huntley said.

Last year, the City of Flin Flon was approved to receive just shy of $3.5 million from the federal government and around $2.9 million from the province to help build a replacement for Flin Flon’s pool, which was closed and demolished in 2020. Several locations around Flin Flon were pitched as possible locations for the new pool facility, but the frontrunner has been and remains the Willow Park Curling Club area, up the hill from Ecole McIsaac School, not only preferred by councillors but by most voters in a community consultation poll done by the City last year. The area is currently used by the City, mainly for equipment and vehicle storage - the concrete pad the curling rink was built on remains more or less unused.

No firm timetable or opening date for a pool facility has yet been confirmed, but more information - including public consultation sessions for how the project will be constructed and what people in Flin Flon may want - will likely come later this year, along with a possible start to construction by the end of the year.