April 22, 2008
MONCTON (CNB) – The Government of Canada and the Province of New Brunswick joined the City of Moncton and the Université de Moncton today for a sod-turning ceremony to officially mark the start of construction on Moncton’s new world-class track and field facility.
Additional Government of Canada funding of $1.5 million was also announced toward the project by Fundy Royal MP Rob Moore, on behalf of National Defence Minister Peter MacKay, minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA). This additional funding brings the total Government of Canada investment in this project to $7.5 million.
The Province of New Brunswick also announced additional funding of $1.5 million toward the project. Premier Shawn Graham made the announcement, bringing the Province of New Brunswick’s total investment to $6.5 million in this project.
“The Province of New Brunswick is proud to be an important partner in this infrastructure project for Moncton and New Brunswick,” Graham said. “Investing in the Moncton Stadium will enhance New Brunswick’s profile and help us towards self-sufficiency through the enhancement of job creation, economic impact on the community, and hosting major international and national events.”
“Our government is committed to supporting projects that strengthen capacity and advance long-term economic opportunities for communities such as Moncton,” Moore said. “Beyond the opportunities generated through the 2010 World Junior Championships in athletics, this new facility will be instrumental in attracting many other significant sporting, cultural and entertainment events to the Moncton area.”
“Moncton has a strong commitment to this project, not only to ensure the success of the IAAF Championships in 2010, but also to invest in what will become a community facility for a variety of local and regional events,” added Mayor Lorne Mitton. “Today is the first of many exciting milestones on the road to building what will be a world-class facility.”
This multi-million dollar project involves the construction of a world-class track and field facility at the Université de Moncton campus in preparation for the World Junior Championships in Athletics (Track and Field) to be held in Moncton in 2010. The championships will be the largest sporting event ever held in Atlantic Canada, with an estimated 2,000 athletes participating from 170 countries. The new stadium will contain open bleachers, box seating, concession stands, storage, washrooms, hospitality rooms, announcer rooms and offices.
“We are very happy to be a partner in organizing these championships, and are pleased to offer our resources and expertise in order to make this event a success,” said Yvon Fontaine, president of Université de Moncton. “The addition of this infrastructure on our campus will strongly support our excellent programs in sport for future generations of student athletes, and foster closer ties between the university and the surrounding community.”
The Government of Canada is investing $7.5 million in the project through ACOA’s Innovative Communities Fund. The Province of New Brunswick, through the Regional Development Corporation, is providing $6.5 million, while the City of Moncton is providing $5 million and the Université de Moncton’s contribution is valued at $3.5 million.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Background information follows. MEDIA CONTACTS: Bruce Macfarlane, Regional Development Corporation, 506-444-4606; Sharon Stanford-Rutter, senior communications officer, ACOA, 506-451-2677; Jillian Somers, City of Moncton
506-859-2663; Paul Émile Benoît, Université de Moncton, 506-858-4129.
• The Moncton stadium will have a capacity of 10,000, including fixed bleacher seating for 5,000 spectators and temporary bleacher seating for an additional 5,000 spectators. The three-storey stadium will be connected to an existing building on the campus via an overhead pedway. The total estimated cost for construction is $14.59 million.
• The World Junior Championships in Athletics (Track and Field) will be the largest sporting event ever held in Atlantic Canada, and the economic benefits to hosting the event will be far-reaching. An estimated 2,000 athletes from 170 countries, and an expected audience of 40,000 spectators, will attend the six-day event. In addition to the participants and spectators, the international media coverage of the event will also provide significant exposure for the city, the province and the Atlantic region. Over 200 representatives from print and electronic media are expected to attend the event.
• Beyond the 2010 event, the stadium will provide a venue for soccer, football, other competitive athletic events and cultural and entertainment activities. It will also provide added infrastructure available for the University to use. The City of Moncton and the Université de Moncton will jointly manage the construction, ongoing maintenance and use of the stadium.