Grant funding needed for the KSM Skatepark has been turned down by the government.
The District of Port Hardy had applied back in December for $300,000 to $500,000 from the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program- COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure Stream to rebuild the town’s aging skatepark.
At a June 22 meeting, a letter from Brian Bedford, Executive Director, Local Government Infrastructure and Finance, relayed the unfortunate news to Port Hardy council.
“We would like to advise that, after careful consideration, the above-noted project was not selected for funding under the ICIP–CVRIS,” stated Bedford. “The program received significantly more applications than could be funded. This decision does not reflect on the importance of this project for your community, but rather the degree by which the program has been oversubscribed. All applications were equitably reviewed and given consideration for funding.”
When asked to comment on the letter, Port Hardy mayor Dennis Dugas said it was “definitely not good news, we were pretty excited about the opportunity, but unfortunately they were oversubscribed.”
Dugas added council “hasn’t forgotten about [the KSM Skatepark], it’s still on the books and we are looking at it seriously.”
Coun. Fred Robertson, who is the chair for the Parks, Recreation, Arts, and Culture Committee, confirmed there are no plans to tear down or move the skatepark elsewhere, and that council “will do what we need to maintain it.”
He added that any plans to build a brand new skatepark are “probably on hold” while they continue to try to apply for grant funding.
The Kyle Scow Memorial Skatepark was originally built in 2003 thanks to over three years of fundraising from the Port Hardy Skateboard Club, $20,000 dollars from the Rotary Club of Port Hardy, and donations made from local business owners to help cover the shortfalls.