It’s nice to see how quickly the Red River Roping and Riding club is rebounding.
You may remember that their former arena in the RM of Buckland was destroyed when the roof collapsed under the weight of snow just over a year ago in February of 2013.
In a couple of weeks, a temporary new facility will take its place.
The 14,000-square-foot building is phase one of a three-phase process that will eventually see a $1.3-million, 30,000-square-foot steel building attached to the interim arena
The bigger facility will include a riding arena and stalling barn
The third phase will see the interim arena converted into a community hall, canteen, lobby and office building expected to open in 2016, at a cost of $800,000.
It’s a visionary plan that shows the club doesn’t lack for ambition. But small thoughts never win big victories; the plan that the club has put together will ensure its viability into the future.
Club president John Beaulac says that the interim facility was put up so quickly because an existing building came up for sale. The building was intended to go up at a mine in northern Saskatchewan; now it will allow the club to resume operations quicker than anyone could have dreamed possible.
“Our original plan was to do a bigger building that would have included the riding arena and hall under one roof, but when were able to get this building and put it up right away, that gave us the opportunity to do the interim riding arena and do the three-phase project,” Beaulac told the Daily Herald’s Tyler Clarke.
“We were able to purchase this building because it had been abandoned, so we got the building at a good price … So, that’s why we changed our plan.”
An additional bit of good news is that the new building will come in under its anticipated cost of $375,000.
The club will work hard to pay for their fancy new digs, with a combination of financial contributions and donated labour helping greatly.
“It’s starting to come together,” Beaulac said. “For some of us, it’s not happening quick enough, but I know for some others looking from the outside they’re surprised at how fast we’re bouncing back.”
The club’s plan is admirable because they are showing the foresight of building for the future. It’s easy to build what you need next year; it takes courage to construct for 20 years from now.
It’s a lesson worth remembering as the city surveys its recreational needs in the future, which may include a new arena, a new swimming pool and perhaps a new curling rink.
Nobody likes to spend the money for nice things but everybody likes the benefits that they bring. With good planning, which may include finding a way to group the facilities together, the city will hopefully find a way to find the maximum value for the minimum expenditure when the day comes for new buildings, whether that’s in 2020 or 2050.
Prince Albert Daily Herald