Twin-pad soccer dome?
Bold alternative proposed for liquor warehouse

by Richard Gleeson
Northern News Services

NNSL (Apr 29/98) - The old liquor warehouse could be turned into heaven for soccer players and make money to boot, a soccer supporter and student told city council Monday.

Ingrid Green presented plans to transform the large building into a twin indoor soccer court and rollerdome. The city had planned to demolish the building to make way for a twin-pad arena, until a loan for the project was rejected in a ratepayer plebiscite two weeks ago.

"I would see this as a public facility, but would urge whoever manages it to make a profit," said Ingrid Green. "This is an opportunity to make hundreds of thousands of dollars for youth programs."

The GNWT owns the building and the land, but agreed to sell it to the city for $1 only if an arena was to be built on it.

But city council does not want the property to slip from the city's grasp.

Responding to questions from Ald. Peggy Near, Green said the Aurora Soccer League now pays $15,000 a year in school gymnasium fees. The difference between that and the money required to pay the $1.4-million mortgage to renovate the building would be made up primarily by leasing storage space back to the territorial government.

Green's preliminary calculations indicated about $100,000 annually could be made by leasing a part of the property to the government.

Other revenue could be raised through equipment rentals, two concession stands, a pro shop, and by renting space for bingos and trade shows.

Responding to questions from Ald. Bob Brooks, Green said the project would require no start-up money from the city. A number of options are being considered for minimal ongoing support, she said, among them covering the salary of a building manager.

She added that the building would also be ideal for such sports as volleyball, floor hockey and lacrosse.

The proposal has been referred to the community services committee for further consideration.

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