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“We can preserve it and use it wisely,” said Flowers. “It is essential that it remains community-based. We can all use it, share it and make the best use of it. “

COCHRANE— A motion by Councilor Susan Flowers at Monday’s council meeting (March 8) is to ensure that momentum for the creation of a new Big Hill Lodge facility is not lost.

The Tri-Site on Fifth Avenue is one of Cochrane’s finest properties and located in the heart of downtown, said Flowers, and there is a need to protect it and “make it a gem for the future.” “. The site is expected to house the new Big Hill Lodge.

Flowers’ motion asked council to order the city administration to prepare a report on the land owned by the city of downtown Fifth Avenue and return to council with a package of measures to move the project forward. . The report will be presented at the June 14 council meeting.

“The Tri-Site committee has done a lot of work on engaging audiences and determining what would be best for the Fifth Avenue site,” said Flowers. “But, now it’s been a few years with COVID and all the changes within the city, a new CAD, the economy collapsing so it’s kind of pushed aside. I don’t want to lose all the good work that has been done by this group. “

Flowers is anxious to see the administration’s report, she said, and hopes to make plans over the summer so that something can be in place for the Tri-Site before the fall and the elections.

His particular concern is to ensure that the site is ready for the Rocky View Foundation, the organization that is preparing to build a new Big Hill Lodge. The Rocky View Foundation has a new design for the facility and is ready to start growing when the economy begins to recover from the economic fallout from COVID-19.

Flowers is hoping that by then next year, steps will be taken to define what the site will look like so user groups can start fundraising.

“We can preserve it and use it wisely,” said Flowers. “It is essential that it remains community-based. We can all use it, share it and make the best use of it. “

Cochrane’s 2021 budget earmarked $ 100,000 from operating reserves for a study of the maintenance of the Tri-Site utilities to help move development in the region. The transit and innovation center, a critical Tri-Site facility, is expected to begin construction in June at a cost of $ 4.85 million.

While it is essential to develop and plan for these projects, Flowers said, the site needs to be addressed as a whole and Big Hill Lodge needs to be included in the discussions.

“The city needs to plan the whole site, not just fragment it,” said Flowers. “There must be something in place.

Flowers added that there is a need to prepare for any grants that will become available after COVID so that the city can be ready to apply.

She noted that 2021 is an election year and the city administration needs to create a plan for the next step at the site to ensure continuity for the region.

The development of the Tri-Site is an important milestone for the future of Cochrane, said Coun. Tara McFadden, and he meets the social and recreational needs of the community.

The Tri-Site and Horse Creek Sports Park are linked in development, McFadden said, because a plan is needed for both.

“One of the cool things about Tri-Sites and in particular the rodeo grounds site is that this is what is being considered for senior housing and the Rocky View Foundation. It is an overdue need in our community, ”said McFadden. “As a municipality, we have to work with it to make sure this site is ready so we can move forward.”

One of the commitments linked to the development of the Tri-Site has been to ensure that the user groups will have the same level of programming and space. This commitment means that in order for development to begin at the Fifth Avenue location, a replacement ball field would have to be established in the city at Horse Creek Sports Park.

“Anyone who is active on this site is not going to lose anything. They are tied and we have to be strategic and deliberate about it,” McFadden said. “In my opinion, that’s one of the things we’re really going to advocate for to get Horse Creek to grow as quickly as possible, it’s a matching diamond for them.”

The Horse Creek and Tri-Site site plans started with the current council, but it will take more than one council to complete the projects.

She noted that it is important to have a template in place for these projects so that when a new board arrives in the fall, it can move forward with the information available.

“So few projects are something that one board can take credit for or complete,” McFadden said. “What I’ve heard from residents is that parks, recreation and senior housing, arts and culture, the people of Cochrane, we want it all. We want to have a full community. “