Questions raised about proposed lodge

A Rimbey resident concerned about changes to plans for a proposed seniors’ lodge to be constructed in town asked council to explain

A Rimbey resident concerned about changes to plans for a proposed seniors’ lodge to be constructed in town asked council to explain the reasoning behind the new numbers.

Jan Boyarzin, who attended Wednesday’s council meeting, said it was reported in the Rimbey Review in May that the proposed lodge was to cost $13.3 million, but in last week’s Review that price had changed to $15.5 million.

In an interview Thursday, Rimoka board chairman Paul McLauchlin said cost related numbers are approximate and the size has changed in accordance with additional dollars to be borrowed for the project.

“Forty is what we had applied for, but with the addition of a loan, we can build 80 rooms.”

McLauchlin said the majority of the rooms will be one-bedroom.

“There is a room size requirement that is attached to the assisted living grant. There are modern, safe requirements. It will be quite impressive when it is done.”

“There has been no more land earmarked,” said Boyarzin, adding she was concerned about the size of the facility increasing, but no mention of more land being purchased.

But Mayor Rick Pankiw said there is more than enough land to accommodate the proposed lodge.

“The county purchased 8.54 acres from SJC Corp which is being transferred to Rimoka Foundation, which is a lot of room for an 80 room lodge, even allowing room for expansion.”

A request for proposal for the architectural design will be out by the end of the month, said McLauchlin, adding Rimoka Foundation is working with Alberta Housing on the project.

“There is a process to follow,” he noted.

Pankiw suggested Boyarzin request being added to the agenda as a delegate at the next Rimoka Housing Foundation board meeting which is to be Nov. 26 at Ponoka County office at 9 a.m.