Work can now begin on plans to turn the D Coy Armouries into a community hub. On Thursday, Rotary Club of Grande Prairie officially handed the D Coy Armouries Foundation a check for $1.8 million pledged to the foundation back in November 2018.
The building across from Swanavon School was built in 1942 as a drill hall, and its last major renovation was in 1990. D Coy Community Hub Project Chair Bruce Tattrie says they initially wanted to upgrade some areas of the building but after looking at it, decided more work was needed.
“[We thought] maybe we could just take the bathrooms and revamp them but because of the vintage of the building, anything we would have done would have triggered a lot of safety code changes so then we decided maybe we should just revamp the whole thing and make it a community hub.”
Currently, five youth programs are run out of the facility including the army and air cadets and YMCA North programs. Once construction is finished, Tattrie hopes a lot more groups will take advantage of it.
“The facility itself will seat 400 people when it’s all said and done with a full kitchen so we’ll be able to host some major events which we’re hoping will help the community.”
The money has come from sales of tickets for the dream home lottery, 50/50 and cash cow lottery. An official start date on the renovations has not been decided yet. Construction should take one year to complete and cost around $3.5 million dollars.