Nelson City Council Approves Cube 2.0 Location
This Tuesday, August 9th, saw Nelson City Council approve 820-10th Street as the location for the Kootenay Climbing Association's impending Cube 2.0 facility.
The included no-cost leasing of land over ten years was a hard pill to swallow for Councillor Keith Page:
“We’ve constantly said that is it important to keep a fair and balanced approach to the tax-payer even when it comes to the non-profits, that there is a value there that these guys are aspiring for, and so I would advocate for us not walking into this and deciding that we are just going to give the land away….”
City Manager Kevin Cormack explains it's a common practice for non-profits:
“…. We have a number of lease arrangements with non-profits…. All our civic entre facilities…. None of them have any lease payments with them so I just want to clarify that our policy is not that we charge fair market rent. What we do is charge for things like utilities….”
“Well I think one of the things that is missing for me when handing out a benefit like this is we haven’t had public consultation if this is a priority for the public…. We haven’t had a feasibility study, we don’t have a needs assessment it’s not coming out of long-term planning, (and) it’s not an existing component trying to develop. It’s a non-profit, they’re doing well, they’re expanding, (and) they’re going further….” Councillor Page responds
A following Facebook post from Councillor Page (August 10th) proposes policy for public consultation on no-lease agreements to weigh public needs and opinion. He cites a need for other local amenities like housing.
The Association has long sought an Olympic caliber indoor climbing facility in Nelson and the Cube 2.0 will be just a short distance from their current 10th Street Selkirk College location: The Cube Climbing Gym. The proposed plan is to lease the land to the Association after their debt incurred through development has been paid off. The Climbers are still responsible for preparation, construction, maintenance costs and more.
The Kootenay Climbing Association also hopes to expand programming by being in proximity to the Svoboda Road climbing crag and partnering with both Selkirk and LVR.