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HomeNewsGroup proposes The Cube 2.0: $4.3 million Olympic-sized indoor climbing gym

Group proposes The Cube 2.0: $4.3 million Olympic-sized indoor climbing gym

Outgrowing its current location, the Kootenay Climbing Association is looking to Nelson City Council for an agreement on a new home.

Since it opened in 2014, The Cube in Mary Hall at the 10th Street campus of Selkirk College has seen 84 per cent growth.

But now it can’t handle the demand due to limited hours based on the college’s operations and the numbers of adult and youth climbers, which has topped 10,000 in a single year for the first time, city council heard Tuesday night.

The group is proposing an Olympic standard 500 square meter facility (5,380 square foot) to be built at one of two preferred locations: 820 10th Street, right near the existing facility, or at 824 Front Street next to the Nelson and District Community Complex (NDCC).

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The building has an estimated cost of $4.3 million and would be primarily paid for with $2.5 million in federal and provincial grants. The group plans to hire a grant application writer. Under the KCA’s proposal, it would pay a dollar-a-year lease for the city land while it pays off its $1 million loan for the building. Once the loan is paid, it would have a fair market value lease, which is 5 per cent of the assessed value of the land, based on city policy.

The KCA expects The Cube 2.0 would have revenue of $440,000 and expenses of $422,000, which includes paying back the loan.

“It’s not a fad,” spokeswoman Jayme Moye said. “Looking to Europe we’re seeing it as a lifestyle. In France, for example, indoor climbing is like hockey is to Canada,” Moye told council.

Moye says indoor climbing in more inclusive than outdoor climbing because there’s a smaller commitment of time and money to get involved.

The association estimates a new facility would result in an economic spin off up to $500,000 with people staying, dining and shopping while taking part in regional and major climbing competitions.

The idea has been left with city staff for an upcoming report to council.

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