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December 24th, 2014 ~ Vol. 84 No. 50
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Albert Stella Arena temporarily closed
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Herald Archive photo
Above is a photo of a group of councillors and community minded individuals who salvaged material from the old Blairmore Arena for use in the erection of a brand new (Albert Stella Arena) curling rink and arena that was opened in 1959.
EZRA BLACK
Pass Herald Reporter
After a facility review and evaluation of the Albert Stella Memorial Arena raised concerns regarding the condition of the building, the municipality has temporarily closed the building.
“The flags were around moisture penetration and potential resulting problems,” said director of Community Services Lyle Hannan in an email interview. “Especially in an old building where asbestos materials are located. Some other issues were long term concerns …. and some were smaller issues around fire exiting and safety.”
As a result of the evaluation, the consultant expressed concerns with regard to the condition of the building that will require further evaluation and testing, said a municipal release.
Hannan said he will be meeting with community groups that use the arena for programing to make alternative arrangements.
An engineering report on the arena was completed in 2011 and the municipality recently hired an architectural firm to inspect the facility.
The release states the facility review was started in 2013 to investigate the condition of the building renovation costs and the viability of renovation options. Dave Shortreed, a frequent user of the facility. provides his thoughts on the issue.
“Maybe they do and maybe they don't, but historically, when doors are closed, they're never opened again.”
“The arena is shut down for "repairs", with no definitive date for reopening.” “Kids play soccer, lacrosse, baseball, the climb, skateboard, do gymnastics and golf, just to mention a few of the activities that take place at the Albert Stella.”
“The heat was turned off two years ago on the arena side due to unsafe conditions. Curiously, the pilots were all still lit on the heaters.”
continued below...


“No maintenance has been performed, other than light bulbs, a piece of glass and some crudely cut piece of plywood.”
“The arena surface is now covered in artificial turf and is used regularly, by many. The skatepark has been built by volunteers, as was the climbing wall. It has cost us nothing other than lights and heat on the curling side.”
“Voice your desire to see this arena repaired, as a new facility is a pipe dream, and would cost in excess of $15 million.”
“There are options, they are logistically practical and financially responsible and the time for lolly gagging is over.”
“I was told $50,000 for repairs is something council would feel comfortable with. My thought is get rid of some dead wood, free up somesalary money, and we're easily into the hundreds of thousands for repairs both at the Stella and possibly our ill managed (town managed) ski hill (which, by the way, had the property donated by Devon before they closed their doors).”
“We're rapidly losing our community and I feel the very people tasked with keeping this a great place to call home, sit and watch.”
“This has gone on for years, with no one willing to make ANY tough decisions.”
“Our last council eliminated Thunder in the Valley, and now we are dangerously close to losing a facility that caters to many in this community. “Call 562-8833 and voice your opinion. Time for the status quo has long come and gone.”
“I suppose the other choice is to have our kids and residents go without.”
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December 24th ~ Vol. 84 No. 50
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