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Posted: February 24, 2021

Fairmont airport runway refurbishment gets funds

The provincial government this morning announced it is investing $30 million in 63 small-scale infrastructure projects throughout B.C.

One of the 63 funded projects is in the East Kootenay.

The Columbia Valley Airport Society’s CYCZ Airport Runway Refurbishment project is receiving $242,528. The project will refurbish the runway constructed in 1986 at the Columbia Valley Airport in Fairmont Hot Springs.

“Communities, large and small, have been dealing with the impacts of COVID-19, and we are here to help them recover stronger than ever,” said Josie Osborne, Minister of Municipal Affairs. “This new funding will assist local governments, First Nations and non-profits to invest in the infrastructure their communities need, while creating and restoring jobs for people who live within B.C.’s hardest hit regions. We’re making sure that no one is left behind as we advance job and economic development across the province while building stronger, more resilient communities.”

Local governments, First Nations and not-for-profit organizations were eligible to apply in October 2020, and 63 projects have been approved.

These projects will address short-term community needs, such as revitalizing local parks, washrooms and downtown cores, creating additional space for physical distancing and upgrading public buildings, a Ministry of Municipal Affairs media release explained.

Successful applicants can hire the company of their choice to work on projects with the goal of stimulating local economies by creating new construction jobs and restoring jobs in other areas impacted by COVID-19, such as retail and hospitality services.

The $30 million comes from the Community Economic Resilience stream of the Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure Program (CERIP).

CERIP is providing $100 million in one-time infrastructure grants for projects that are ready to go throughout the province. These projects will improve community economic resilience, develop tourism infrastructure, support unique heritage infrastructure and support economic recovery for rural communities.

CERIP funding is distributed across five different streams managed by separate partner ministries: Municipal Affairs; Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport; Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operators and Rural Development; and Children and Family Development.

All CERIP projects must begin construction in 2021 and be completed by March 31, 2023.

The only other project in the Kootenays to receive funds is Nelson’s Hall Street Pier Project, which is getting $1 million to provide upgrades to the Hall Street Pier, which was a vital regional transportation hub in the 1900s where sternwheelers, railcars and horse-drawn cabs would converge.

Projects receiving funds.

Lead image: The Fairmont Hot Springs Airport. Fairmont Hot Springs Resort file photo


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