City council made the decision to close the arena from January to June this year during its final session of 2020 before the Christmas holiday break. The decision was made before the provincial government decided to impose a second lockdown for Ontario to deal with the rising number of COVID-19 cases during the second wave of the pandemic.
The provincial lockdown affects all public recreational facilities where large gatherings of people might congregate. Council’s decision for a temporary closure of the arena is to provide administration with the time needed to contact le Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l’Est ontarien (CSDCEO) and work out a partnership agreement for future maintenance responsibility of the facility.
The CSDECEO uses the concrete arena floor as an indoor gymnasium area for some of its physical education activities for students from L’Escale. The arena is also a popular facility for many local recreation and community groups and also for several sports clubs from the Ottawa area.
Temporary closure of the facility means a reduction in the 2021 budget allocation for its maintenance needs.