The first year of operation has come to a close at ATB Centre – Phase 1 and the new curling facility and twin ice arenas have many successes to celebrate.
An additional 4,287 hours of programmed ice use was recorded this season and six special events and/or tournaments added, thanks to the opening of the ATB Centre twin ice arenas.
"We are thrilled to see how well used and appreciated this facility is by our community," says Robin Harper, Recreation and Culture Facilities Operations Manager for the City of Lethbridge. "Visitors, including those who came for the World Curling Championships in March, have also had very positive things to say."
From April 22-29 ATB Centre hosted its first major event, the World Mix Doubles and World Senior Curling Championships. This event welcomed 77 curling teams from 41 countries and brought in more than 350 athletes and coaches. The event had national television coverage and generated a predicted $1.5 million in economic activity, a huge boost for the profile of Lethbridge.
In addition to this major international event, the Lethbridge Curling Club saw existing league participation increase and a new league added to their programing in the first season at ATB Centre. Access to sledge hockey doubled in the 2016/17 season and 100 hours of youth programing for recreational hockey was added because of the increased capacity.
"The success of the first season at ATB Centre speaks to how much this resource was needed in our community," says City Councillor Rob Miyashiro, chair of the ATB Centre Steering Committee. "And this is just Phase 1. We can already feel the excitement growing in the community for the Phase 2. I couldn't be more proud to be part of this amazing project."
ATB Centre is located at 74 Mauretania Road West. Phase 1 includes a 10-sheet curling facility, operated by the Lethbridge Curling Club, and two NHL-sized arenas. The arenas operate year-round. For current public skating schedules, visit www.lethbridge.ca/ATBCentre.
ATB Centre - Phase 2 is currently under construction and will include an aquatics centre with waterslides, lazy river and whirlpools as well as a multi-sport field house, fitness centre, indoor track, gymnasiums, child-minding area and indoor playground. Phase 2 is expected to open in 2019.
Robin Harper, Facilities Operations Manager
Recreation and Culture, City of Lethbridge