PISE track ground breaking ceremony held with a major funding announcement
May 29, 2015
Victoria, BC – May 28, 2015) The Official Ground Breaking for the PISE Track was held today with the announcement of an additional $150,000 contribution from the Province of British Columbia. The project, which will be a fully accessible 4-lane, 400 metre track, includes spectator seating and a wheelchair accessible incline training area. Over 80% in pledges towards the track project has been secured to date.
Phase I of the track, a multi-purpose Track and Training Zone, adjacent to the building overlooking the field, is currently being utilized by athletes, students and PISE members. The recent donation from the Government of British Columbia brings PISE closer to its goal of hosting a track grand opening in Fall 2015. To date the BC Government has provided $250,000 towards the $1M+ project – the largest contribution towards the Track Project to date.
“Active lifestyles promote good health and community growth,” said Michelle Stilwell, Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation. “Our government supports BC athletes, and this accessible facility will help British Columbians of all abilities participate and excel in sports. It will benefit the region and the province by supporting community users and high-performance athletes alike.”
The new track will alleviate the shortage of accessible quality tracks in the Capital Regional District, offering a unique facility that can be used by high performance athletes as well as the community.
“The track is one of the final elements of our Western High Performance Hub, it will complement the excellent coaching and support services already in place through PISE,” said Rob Guy, Athletics Canada Chief Executive Officer. Guy adds, “A fully functional West Hub is important in ensuring Athletics Canada can achieve its performance objectives of consistently winning two to three medals at the Olympic Games and World Championships, and placing ourselves as a top ten Paralympic nation.”
Environmental sustainability is an important aspect of the Track Project. The new track will be made of BC recycled rubber. “The use of BC recycled rubber for the track surface is an excellent example of how British Columbians benefit when scrap tires are diverted from landfill and recycled into marketable products,” said Rosemary Sutton, Executive Director, Tire Stewardship BC. “Tire Stewardship is proud to partner with PISE on this wonderful community initiative that supports the high performance development of Canadian athletes, and the wellness of our community.”
PISE is working on enhancements to the facility around accessibility, with the goal of becoming a designated National Paralympic Training Centre. The track will provide another major opportunity for Para-athletes and adapted athletes to train for sprint, and varying distance sports on an accessible surface. Accessibility and inclusion for community members is an equally important element of this facility development and is line with the Government of Canada’s focus around inclusion.
“Our Government is committed to ensuring that Canadians of all abilities have the chance to contribute to our communities and be included in all aspects of society,” said the Honourable Candice Bergen, Federal Minister of State for Social Development. “Through our investments in the Enabling Accessibility Fund we are eliminating barriers and we’re helping to improve accessibility and create opportunities for all Canadians”
“We envision a Canada where everyone has the opportunity to be physically active throughout their life in a healthy, enjoyable manner. The new track will provide a tremendous benefit to our community of Greater Victoria and will be accessible to individuals of all ages and abilities, enhancing both health and excellence. We are so grateful to the Government of British Columbia for this new major contribution,” stated Robert Bettauer, CEO of PISE.
While construction of the track is set to begin, fundraising is ongoing for the project, with $200,000 still needed to cover the cost of a Jumps Area for Athletics.
The major supporters of this project include the Government of British Columbia, The Government of Canada, Athletics Canada, Tire Stewardship BC, PacificSport Victoria, Canadian Sport Institute, Camosun College, Peninsula Co-op, Corix and KidSport. In addition, a number of private donors have also contributed to this project. As a non-profit society, funding for the track project is 100% dependent on corporate and community support. For more details on the Track Project and ongoing funding needs, visit piseworld.com/track-project
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