Local MLA and minister of agriculture, Lana Popham, Coun. Susan Brice, Lisa Beare, provincial minister of tourism, arts and culture, and Olympic-medal winning swimmer Ryan Cochrane attended Monday’s funding announcement for Saanich’s Commonwealth Pool. The province announced $100,000 in funding to help high-performance athletes access the facility in preparation of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games. (Wolf Depner/News Staff).

Province dips into Saanich’s Commonwealth pool with Olympic funding

Province gives $100,000 towards the Commonwealth Pool Operating Trust Fund

A former Canadian Olympian who trained at Saanich’s Commonwealth Pool applauds additional support for high-performance athletes training at the facility.

“Victoria and Saanich is one of the best communities to be an athlete in,” said Ryan Cochrane, “But it takes funding to support those athletes. If they can’t afford to continue to swim after a certain age, we are potentially barring our next Olympic heroes. So this type of funding is incredibly important and I hope it continues.”

Cochrane, who won an Olympic bronze medal at the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing, and a a silver medal at the 2012 Summer Games in London, made these comments after the provincial government announced $100,000 towards the Commonwealth Pool Operating Trust Fund. The federal government, provincial government and the District of Saanich established the fund after Greater Victoria hosted the 1994 Commonwealth Games as a legacy of the games.

RELATED: Former Olympic swimmer looks to make a splash in real estate

This funding covers a two-year funding shortfall between now and the end of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games cycle in August 2020, so that athletes and coaches can continue training without disruption.

Lisa Beare, provincial minister of tourism, arts and culture, announced the funding Monday at the facility alongside Cochrane, local MLA and Minister of Agriculture Lana Popham, and Coun. Susan Brice, representing Saanich.

Beare said the facility is a key training facility for future Olympians and Para-Olympians.

She said the funding will reduce barriers for high-performance aquatic athletes training at the pool. The funding will also support more than 600 club-based athletes who use the pool and other athletic resources.

RELATED:Gas tax funds fuel a greener Commonwealth Place

Brice said the investment will not only help high-performance athletes, but also aspiring athletes who observe them. She also highlighted the larger legacy of the facility and the trust fund.

The pool serves both high-performance athletes and residents, she said.

“The one-of-a-kind partnership formed between all levels of government has allowed sports and recreation to continuously thrive in our community,” she said. “Our unique partnership has allowed both residents and high performance athletes to work side by side and benefit from that synergy.”

Commonwealth Place – built as part of the legacy of the 1994 Commonwealth Games – is used by more than 2,500 residents (including 1,600 swimmers) every day, employing about 200 staff and 150 contractors.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Increased rental construction boosts housing starts across Greater Victoria

Rest of Vancouver Island experiencing spillover effect from Greater Victoria

Bay Street Bridge construction begins today

Point Ellice Bridge will be closed to eastbound vehicle traffic until October

Some showers, high of 18 C for Tuesday

Plus a look ahead at your weekly forecast

Survey finds 15 per cent of Canadian cannabis users with a valid licence drive within two hours of using

Survey also finds middle-aged men are upping their usage following legalization

VIDEO: Fun without sun: Hundreds enjoy Family Fest on Victoria Day

Families enjoy activities in Veterans Memorial Park

Feds launch tourism strategy designed to boost sector 25 per cent by 2025

The fund is supposed to back experiences that show off Canada’s strengths

Mamma Mia! poised to be biggest Chemainus Theatre show ever

Plenty of buzz as Island dinner theatre schedules ABBA-fueled romp

New book from Island author details social history of the E&N railway

Along the E&N tells the story of 32 establishments from Esquimalt to Campbell River.

Should B.C. already be implementing province-wide fire bans?

A petition is calling for B.C. Wildfire Service to issue a ban to reduce risk of human caused wildfires

Growing wildfire prompts evacuation of High Level, Alta.

Chuckegg Creek fire has been burning for several days, but grew substantially Sunday

Top women’s hockey player Natalie Spooner coming to B.C.

Natalie Spooner special guest at annual Grindstone charity weekend in Kelowna

Take-home drug testing kits latest pilot to help curb B.C.’s overdose crisis

Researchers look to see if fentanyl testing could be a useful tool for those who use drugs alone

Facebook takes down anti-vaxxer page that used image of late Canadian girl

Facebook said that the social media company has disabled the anti-vaccination page

Most Read