It is a project that will revitalize one of Kipling’s core recreation facilities.
On October 6th, Dominic LeBlanc (Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs – Infrastructure & Communities) and Don McMorris (Saskatchewan’s Government Relations Minister announced $44.6 million in joint federal and provincial funding for 28 infrastructure projects in Saskatchewan.
One of the projects that will receive funding through this joint investment focused on building “more resilient, greener communities” will be Phase 2 of the upgrades planned for the Kipling Arena.
Gail Dakue (Town of Kipling CAO) says that the funding announced today not only represents an investment from the Federal and Provincial governments – but a joint effort on the part of local governments as well.
“The Federal Government has contributed $166,400 towards this project, with the Provincial Government contributing $138,653. The recipient portion is $110, 947.
“However, the RMs of Kingsley and Hazelwood have agreed to share the cost with the Town of Kipling. Their willingness to partner with us on this has helped make this happen.”
Dakue notes that the planned upgrade will address a structural concern and make the facility more accessible.
“A structural analysis report done by the KGS Group identified an issue with a retaining wall in the basement of the arena which required repair. However, in order to repair the retaining wall, the existing vestibule will have to be taken off.
“When that report came through, Council decided to break the project into two phases. Phase One of the project has already been completed. With the funding announced today, Phase 2 can now proceed.
“One of the priorities indemnified in Council’s Strategic Plan was the need to make all public buildings accessible to individuals who are mobility challenged. The Zoning bylaw has also been amended to reflect this priority.
“So, when the vestibule is rebuilt, the entrance will have a wheelchair accessible ramp. That will make the arena more accessible for everybody. As well, a room will be remodeled in order to provide a wheelchair accessible washroom.”
She adds that the project will also include upgrades that will make the arena a “greener” facility.
“There will also be new siding put onto the arena along with new LED lights installed. This will definitely serve to make the Arena more energy efficient as well.”
With the timing of the announcement, Dakue says that the project will be scheduled to begin next spring.
“Unfortunately, this announcement came too late in the season to allow work to begin this year. Work on the upgrades will begin in spring 2023, with the goal of having the upgrade complete by the fall of next year.”
Along with the important practical benefits that will be gained by the project, Dakue points out that the arena’s appearance will be upgraded as well and adds that change will restore the community’s pride in the facility.
“This upgrade will certainly give the arena a clean, fresh new look. The change might prompt someone to consider purchasing the naming rights to a portion of the arena, or to the entire facility. Perhaps this project will lead to a new name (and a new sign) for the arena as well!”

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