On May 6 Jim Carr, the Government of Canada’s Special Representative for the Prairies, on behalf of Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and Saskatchewan’s Government Relations Minister Don McMorris, announced more than $50.2 million in joint funding for 55 infrastructure projects across the province.
The projects are funded under the new COVID-19 Resilience Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
Among other projects, the funding will go toward the construction of a new community centre in Kinistino, which will house the town office, a rental hall, a daycare and a library.
Active transportation networks will be expanded or improved in the Battlefords, Estevan, Kindersley, La Ronge, Swift Current and Yorkton helping to enhance mobility connections and the safety of cyclists and pedestrians. New walking pathways will connect the Flying Dust First Nation community to Meadow Lake, providing increased and safe pedestrian access to community services. In Regina, the Saskatchewan Science Centre will be renovated to make it more accessible. Projects in Moose Jaw, Wilkie and Biggar will upgrade the power supply to municipal buildings using solar panels.
Providing communities with reliable and sustainable infrastructure is a shared priority for both governments. The Government of Canada is investing more than $21.2 million in these 55 projects. For projects requiring consultations with Indigenous groups, funding is conditional on all consultation requirements being met. The Government of Saskatchewan is also contributing over $16.4 million toward these projects. Contributions by recipients toward their respective projects are $12.5 million.
“Through collaboration with our provincial and municipal partners, we are funding important infrastructure projects throughout Saskatchewan,” Carr said in a release.
“With the COVID-19 Resilience Stream, we are also responding to the impacts of the pandemic through flexible and accelerated investments in key infrastructure upgrades as quickly as possible. The funding announced today will help communities build back better, create jobs, and build cleaner, more inclusive communities.”
“From Buffalo Narrows to Estevan, and dozens of communities in-between the Government of Saskatchewan’s $16.4-million investment in these 55 local infrastructure projects will not only help protect local economies, which are continuing to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, but also help create safe, healthy and prosperous communities across the province,” McMorris added.
Area projects funded under the resilience stream include the installation of a new sidewalk and associated works along First Avenue North between First Street North and Ausland Street in Big River, with the federal contribution of $88,578, the provincial contribution is $73,808 and the proponent (community) contribution of $73,808.
Prince Albert will see an upgrade for the Indian and Metis Friendship Centre including upgrade and renovate the entrance area, washroom and related facilities, the federal contribution is $817,800 and the provincial contribution is $272,600.
The Northern Village of Buffalo Narrows has been funded for a repair and upgrade of the Lake View Complex, the federal contribution is $140,000, the provincial contribution is $116,655 and the community contribution is $93,345.
The Resort Village of Candle Lake has been funded to construct a flood mitigation berm and active walking trail, the federal contribution is $101,580, the provincial contribution is $84,642 and the community is contributing $67,729.
Carrot River will be funded for a Pasquia Regional Park Authority Pool House upgrade, which will repair, upgrade and expand the combined shower and pool house, the federal contribution is $52,200, the provincial contribution is $43,496 and the community contribution is $34,804.
The Town of Duck Lake will be upgrading and expanding the Community Park including installing interactive and accessible play structures, along with associated work, the federal contribution is $84,365, the provincial contribution $70,297 and the community contribution is $56,250.
The Town of Kinistino will be build a community centre to house the town office, hall to rent, daycare facilities,library and potential medical clinic, the federal contribution is $2,336,000, the provincial contribution is $1,946,472 and the community contribution is $1,557,528.
La Ronge will be upgrading seven kilometres of existing community trails, the federal contribution is $95,730, the provincial contribution is $79,767 and the community contribution is $63,828.
Nipawin will be doing recreation upgrades as well by adding four permanent dressing rooms with washrooms and showers to the Jubilee Arena, the federal contribution is $669,411, the provincial contribution is $557,787, the town will be contributing $446,330.
Spiritwood will also be doing work on their skating arena mezzanine including items such as insulation, drywall, paint, along with raising the floor for seating,improvements to the concession area and finishing of the stairs in the fire exit area, the federal contribution $58,284, the provincial contribution is $48,565 and the community contribution is $38,861.
According to the release to support Canadians and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, a COVID-19 Resilience Stream has been added to the over $33-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to help fund pandemic-resilient infrastructure. Existing program streams have also been adapted to include more eligible project categories. Through the COVID-19 Resilience Stream, over $3 billion is available to provide provinces and territories with added flexibility to fund quick-start, short term projects. The COVID-19 Resilience Stream allows the Government of Canada to invest up to 80 per cent in projects that support provinces, and up to 100 per cent in projects that support territories and Indigenous communities in their response to the pandemic.
In Saskatchewan, the Government of Canada has invested more than $812 million in$70,297 over 460 infrastructure projects since 2015 under the Investing in Canada Plan.