A new federal grant will be awarded to Merritt for a recent repair work done at Nicola Valley Memorial Arena (NVMA). 

On Thursday, February 23, the Government of Canada announced over $2.5 million in PacifiCan funding for 16 projects across the Thompson Okanagan. 

“Amazing things are happening in the Southern Interior. The region is known for its world-class skill hills, wines and produce and is also home to a thriving tech community and innovative forestry and mining sectors,” said Harjit S. Sajjan Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan).

“Investing in shared public spaces and tourism experiences will bring communities together, attract new visitors, and ensure that the Thompson Okanagan region thrives well into the future.”

PacifiCan is a new economic development agency promotes growth and diversification in B.C.’s economy. Merritt, Eagle Bay, Keremeos, Blind Bay, Magna Bay, Kelowna, Vernon, Peachland and Armstrong will be the recipients of the new PacifiCan funding. 

Merritt will be receiving $122,907 for a BAC Condensing tower replacement at the NVMA. This grant will cover 75% of the total $163,876 project cost. 

“The City had been relying on a 20-year old BAC Condensing tower, but leaks were identified and substantial repairs were required,” reads Merritt’s recent press release.  

“To avoid a catastrophic failure during a time where the community was still reeling from the 2021 flood, staff recommended a full replacement.”

The condenser towers are one of four key components that makes up the refrigeration system of the arena. The other three components are the evaporator, compressor, and expansion valves.

A Request for Proposal was issued in March 2022. City council granted the project budget through the City’s general fund reserve and surplus balances. The full replacement process was completed in September 2022.

The $2.5 million PacifiCan funding uses $240,000 for two projects funded through the Canada Community Revitalization Fund and over $2.3 million for 14 projects funded through the Tourism Relief Fund. 

Its announcement builds off of the recent opening of PacifiCan offices in Cranbrook and Kelowna, establishing an easier access to their services for Southern Interior communities. To learn more, please visit https://www.canada.ca/en/pacific-economic-development/news/2022/11/minister-sajjan-announces-new-pacifican-service-in-the-southern-interior-of-bc.html.