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The Best Place on Earth

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release
2010PREM0180-001219

Oct. 13, 2010

Office of the Premier
Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport

 

 

PREMIER CAMPBELL OPENS NEW FORT ST. JOHN ENERPLEX

 

FORT ST. JOHN – Premier Gordon Campbell joined Fort St. John Mayor Bruce Lantz and Peace River North MLA Pat Pimm today to officially open the Enerplex, the latest addition to British Columbia’s wealth of sport infrastructure.

 

“The Enerplex is an important addition to the Peace region and to our entire province,” said Premier Campbell. “Thanks to the tenacity of Mayor Bruce Lantz, Peace River North MLA Pat Pimm and the people of Fort St. John, this state-of-the-art facility has become a reality and will provide residents of this region with opportunities for sport and recreation that weren’t available before.”

 

The 13,000-square-metre (140,000-square-foot) facility has a speed skating oval, two NHL-size hockey rinks, seating for 1,000 spectators and a 380-metre running track suspended on the third level. In the summer months, the ice surfaces can be removed to accommodate major indoor sporting and cultural events, tradeshows, rodeos and conventions. The Province provided $15 million in funding for the $44-million Enerplex.

 

The oval is one of only four indoor Olympic-size long track speed skating ovals in North America. It will provide an additional training facility for Canada’s speed skating teams and allow athletes who live in the region to train closer to home. This region has already produced a number of national and international speed skaters, including Olympic gold-medal winner Denny Morrison who, with his teammates, won the team pursuit event at B.C.’s 2010 Winter Olympic Games. Morrison has already taken advantage of the new speed skating oval at the Enerplex by coaching children at a summer speed skating camp, giving them a head start on the winter camps. Previously, training was only available in the winter on an outdoor long track.

 

“I am so proud of Fort St. John for supporting this amazing facility,” said Morrison, who is from Fort St. John and is also an ActNow BC athlete ambassador. “I know that my sport is going to benefit from all the young talents who will get their start here at the Enerplex and, hopefully, the time capsule of speed skating memories my brother Jay and I buried under the building will be the ‘lucky loonie’ for future speed skaters and hockey players in Fort St. John.”

 

Full services for high performance athletes will be provided at the Enerplex through a satellite office of Pacific Sport Northern B.C. This is all part of the Province’s plan to expand the role of B.C.’s regional centres that focus on nurturing the province’s next generation of elite national, Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

 

“With this new world-class facility, the next generation of B.C. high performance athletes will have the advantage of getting the support they need, and an Olympic long track right in their own back yard,” said Minister of Healthy Living and Sport Ida Chong. “The Enerplex will help grow the sport of speed skating in B.C. and in Canada. When Denny and his team won gold in February, thousands of young people across the country were inspired and wanted to try the sport, so the opening of this facility is very timely.”

 

“Congratulations to the people of Fort St. John for coming together as a community to see the Enerplex through to its completion,” said MLA for Peace River North Pat Pimm. “This facility will have a significant, positive impact on the health and well being of our residents and is a significant Olympic legacy that will last for generations.”‪  

 

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Contact:

 

Jeff Rud

Communications Director

Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport

250 952-2387

 

 

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