Beltline Community Hub closes to the public on Oct. 14, community programming will continue

A Council-directed feasibility study to explore repurposing the 68-year-old Beltline facility has found the building at 221 12 Ave SW is not suitable for long-term delivery of social recreational programming. Work is underway to identify new locations for priority community programs.

After assessing community social recreational needs through public engagement in 2020, the facility was used to pilot community-based services and programs over the past year. While pilot programs were well-received by the Beltline community, their success is not tied to the building, which is costly to maintain, not fit-for-purpose and in need of significant improvements for accessibility.

“We know social recreational programming is valuable to the community and are working to continue it in other locations,” explains Heather Johnson, Director of The City’s Recreation & Social Programs business unit. “Unfortunately, the building isn’t fit for long-term service delivery.”

In addition to services and programs piloted in the facility, City staff worked with a consultant to assess converting the building to better suit new programming. The results of a feasibility study found that such a conversion would require a capital investment of between $15 and $40 million while programming and operating costs would be approximately $1 million per year, eliminating the cost advantage of a partner-operated model at this location.

Following closure, the facility and lands will remain in The City’s building inventory while work to determine the future best value use is completed.

Renovations to the nearby MNP Community and Sport Centre only one kilometer away will transform the facility into a community hub, offering family-friendly recreation amenities similar to what exists in Calgary’s suburban communities.

“The MNP Community & Sport Centre will expand programs, services and amenities to meet the recreation and wellness needs of those living in downtown Calgary and surrounding communities,” says Jeff Booke, CEO. “With The City of Calgary’s investment, the Centre will add leisure aquatic amenities, universal change rooms, programming, social spaces and build a stronger connection to neighbouring communities. Ultimately, the investment is about creating a central community hub for everyone to enjoy.”