LETTER: Community centre a vision 30 years in the making

Dear Editor,

Could anyone on Bowen Island still have any doubt regarding the Community Center Project Bylaw No 477, 2019 and not vote “yes” in the next referendum? 

It is the achievement of more than 30 years of community vision and effort to own a central location for the multiple artistic and recreational activities of Bowen Islanders all year round. To date organizing any public event (musical, visual, book launch and conference) has always been a challenge as no private setting has been designed for that; space is limited, time setting is awkward at best, acoustics poorly suited, sitting comfort a wishful thinking, ventilation or air conditioning not performing.

The present community center project is to settle definitely those challenges and as it was indicated by our chief administrative officer Liam Edwards, it caught the attention of the federal and provincial representatives of the Canada Infrastructure where municipal, arts and recreation were to be profiting from an investment grant; from the hundred of applications Bowen Island was selected and received $7.9 million of the $14.5 million budgeted for the project. The community has already raised close to $1.5 million and the municipality has $1.2 million held in reserve. The present rental accommodation of the municipality will cover $2 million of the remaining $4 million needed (for the project to go ahead), the latter of which is to be obtained with a 30-year bank loan. How could anyone object to such a proposal?

A “yes” to the referendum will confirm the capability of success of our community in realizing its vision for the future well being of all young and old. It will encourage the potential funding of eventual projects in the years to come. Yes indeed.

 —André Chollat, Anne Franc de Ferrière

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