Terry Fox Tributes Unveiled At Port Coquitlam Community Centre
PORT COQUITLAM, BC – Oct. 5, 2021… The unveiling of new tributes for Terry Fox brought special meaning to the much-anticipated grand opening of the Port Coquitlam Community Centre on Saturday.
More than 5,000 people helped celebrate the opening of the 205,000-square-foot (19,000-square-metre) PCCC on Oct. 2 at a safe event held with all COVID-19 protocols in place and featuring live entertainment, award-winning musicians, family fun, food and beverages, prizes and more. Following four years of construction, the stunning modern facility at 2150 Wilson Ave. is now open with a variety of community and recreational amenities as well as recognition for the Canadian icon who spent most of his childhood and teen years in Port Coquitlam.
“Terry Fox is our hometown hero, who showed the world that ‘dreams are made possible if you try,’” Mayor Brad West said at the Oct. 2 celebration. “This is truly a special day in Port Coquitlam and there is nothing more special, nothing that holds more meaning to this community than being the hometown of Terry Fox.”
In working with the Fox family, the PCCC’s spacious south plaza was officially named Terry Fox Hometown Square. It will be a place where the community comes together to connect and enjoy a variety of free amenities, including sport courts, playgrounds, a walking path, community gardens and a spray park.
Terry Fox Hometown Square will also be a place to learn about the Marathon of Hope. A map showing Fox’s historic 1980 journey from Newfoundland to Ontario and key milestones along the way is embedded in the lower plaza surface. Visitors can scan a QR code on-site to learn more and read the journal entries of the young man who inspired generations of Canadians to raise more than $850 million for cancer research.
As well, the square will become home to new public art honouring Fox and his legacy. In partnership with the Fox family, City Council has approved the commissioning of a new Terry Fox statue for the Terry Fox Hometown Square.
“We will be working closely with the Fox family to produce a statue that is a fitting tribute to our hometown hero, that inspires future generations and that all of us can be proud of,” West said. “Together with the display of Terry Fox artifacts and memorabilia inside of the community centre, we will be leaving no doubt how proud we are to be the hometown of Terry Fox.”
Saturday’s event marked the full opening of the PCCC, which replaced aging recreation facilities with a vibrant community hub featuring high ceilings, large windows and B.C. wood accents.
At Saturday’s festivities, West thanked all those who played a role in bringing this project to fruition, from past and current City staff and Council members to the project partners and the public who patiently adjusted to pile driving, COVID-19 protocols and parking challenges as the project was built in phases beginning in spring 2017.
“This place is for our community. It’s for our families. It’s for our seniors. It’s for our young people and our kids,” West said. “This is for everyone who calls Port Coquitlam home to enjoy and build memories together, to win championships and lose heartbreakers, to form friendships and life-long bonds, to read and discover, to learn lessons that last a lifetime and to connect and grow.”
West added: “This is the place where we will understand that true meaning of community and write the next chapter in the history of this amazing City we call home. And this really is just the beginning – it’s an exciting time of positive renewal and revitalization for our city – and I know our future is looking bright.”
The new facility features:
- Three arenas, including the Jon Baillie Arena with seating for 790
- A gymnasium with sport courts for drop-in and registered programs
- A leisure pool with an accessible sloped entry, two swim lanes, steam room, sauna, lazy river, play features and accessible changerooms
- A two-level 8,500-square-foot fitness centre with cardio and functional training zones, two fitness studios and a weight room with state-of-the-art equipment
- A children’s area for the new City Preschool and childminding
- Terry Fox Library with digital and print resources, internet stations and programs
- Wilson Lounge and kitchen with café-style seating and designated hours for seniors and youth
- A games room with snooker, table tennis games, seating and other activities with designated hours for seniors and youth
- A concession on the second floor with snacks and drinks, overlooking the spectator arena
- The large Mabbett Hall and other multi-purpose spaces for programming and community use
- Underground parking with 425 spots for PCCC users (three-hour limit) with a pick-up/drop-off area
- Washrooms and changerooms with universal and accessible options
- The Terry Fox Hometown Square with seating, lawn, sport courts (including pickleball), playgrounds, a walking path, community gardens, a spray park connected to the leisure pool, and an outdoor gym (equipment coming later this fall)
- Leased space for a future café in the lobby and active rehab/physiotherapy near the fitness centre
Services and programming will continue to be safely and gradually introduced in the new spaces in line with health protocols and operational capacity.
Constructed within its planned timeframe and budget, the $132-million PCCC is the city’s second largest construction project to date, after the $134-million Coast Meridian Overpass. The City constructed the project with design-build partner Ventana Construction and owner’s representative, Tango Management.
The $132-million project has been funded by the City (a combination of land sales revenue, phased-in property taxes and a parcel tax from 2017 to 2020) and the Government of Canada. The project received $12.5 million in federal infrastructure funding through the Building Canada Fund – Major Infrastructure Component and $1.09 million through the Canada Community Building Fund (CCBF) (formerly the federal Gas Tax Fund), which is administered in B.C. by the Union of B.C. Municipalities.
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Manager of Communications & Administrative Services
City of Port Coquitlam