Ponoka County’s continued belief in the Rimbey Agrim Centre has not only manifested itself in actual dollars, but also in the county’s willingness to back a $1.8 million dollar loan.
A notice to county residents signed by Chief Administrative Office Charlie Cutforth states Ponoka County intends to guarantee the loan in support of the Rimbey Agriculture Society’s construction of the Agrim Centre. The guarantee is to be in the form of a line of credit with ATB Financial, Rimbey, with an interest rate of prime less 0.5 per cent.
County Reeve Paul McLaughlin said guaranteeing loans is not a usual practice for the county.
“However, it matches the same endorsement we have extended to the Ag Event Centre in Ponoka.”
Mayor Rick Pankiw said he sees the Agrim Centre as a huge boon to Rimbey.
“The revenue possibilities it could bring into the town are wonderful. The revenue (potential) is astronomical.”
Pankiw encourages the agriculture board to talk to council about the project.
“We’re open to have them come see us. We’re open to help. As a town we support it– one hundred per cent.”
Earlier, the town helped out the Agrim Centre financially by waiving the $50,000 security deposit.
Ken Whitelock, director and building committee member said he is pleased with the speed with which the building is going up.
“It should be closed in before Christmas,” he said.
The opening date has not yet been finalized as it depends on variables like weather and availability of sub trades and materials.
However, the impressive skeleton of the centre is now visible for all to see.
The 60,000-squarefoot Agrim Centre is to include a riding arena, meeting space, boardroom, announcers’ box, concession and a grandstand to seat 900.
The centre is to be multi-functional and bring in spectators for various events as well as provide space for organizations such as 4-H clubs. The centre is to be built with an outside balcony and a solar wall and rainwater is to be used for the building’s non-potable water needs.
Ironwood Building Systems in the primary contractor.
The county has contributed $1.2 million to the project and Eckrim Agencies recently contributed $25,000.
The board is hopeful more private and corporate sponsors will come forward to lend financial support to the $4.5 million dollar building. Donors are also encouraged to purchase square footage at $25 a square.
For more information on the Rimbey Agrim centre check out the website at www.agrim.ca.