Storage would expand use of new school theatre: GPLT Manager

By Justine Kelsie
October 10, 2018 - 4:30pm

The Grande Prairie & District Catholic Schools Board of Trustees will be asking the city and county for money to build a community storage facility.

In a letter to Mayor Bill Given from Board Chair Michael Ouellette, the board is requesting up to $1.4-million to build a storage space for the Performing Arts Centre at the new St. John Paul II Junior-Senior Catholic High School. The letter also states they will be requesting $250,000 from the County of Grande Prairie.

In that letter, Ouellette says the building will need to be constructed for community groups to have storage.

In a statement provided by GPCSD, original design plans for the theatre in 2015 included a 225-square-metre community storage space.

"It's our understanding that due to the speed of the project the City and County were not ready to fund Capital. 225-square-metre of community storage was removed (from the plan) but a small amount of storage was built for student equipment."

The Grande Prairie Live Theatre is the company managing the new theatre space and Manager Wayne Ayling says storage is needed.

"This Performing Arts Centre needs to be able to store things that different type of users would need like banquet tables and chairs, specialized sound and lighting equipment, and specialized backdrops. Other things like sets or props," says Ayling.

Catholic Superintendent Karl German echoed Ayling's comments. 

"We're going to access it as a school system anyway. It would be a shame not to approach the partners and see if they would provide additional funds so that the community can use it more often," says German. 

The city received the letter for correspondence at a Tuesday committee meeting but didn't say they would fund the project. A motion was made to work with the school board and bring back a report to a future committee meeting with an updated cost assessment and design including where the money could come from.

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