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

Son of Second World War veteran returns to Norway to see site of rescue, repatriation

Six-man crew crash lands in Nazi occupied territory, only known instance of entire crew surviving

Open house seeks public input on proposed lease for piece of Victoria High property

Open house takes place at Vic High on Nov. 12 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Colwood house helps homeless veterans get back on their feet

Cockrell House has helped more than 100 people since it was established in 2009

Colwood veteran recalls harrowing experience during Second World War

The 95 year old one of 32 survivors after German sub sinks warship

Legions help keep the memories alive

Legions offer many services for the community

VIDEO: Pups in the pool: West Shore rec centre’s Dog Swim a success

West Shore Parks and Recreation goes to the dogs Sunday night

Greater Victoria 2019 holiday craft fair roundup

Get a jump on your holiday shopping

Sportsnet fires Don Cherry after negative comments about immigrants

Don Cherry had said immigrants don’t wear poppies like other Canadians do

Trudeau’s new cabinet: Gender parity because it’s 2019? Or due to competence?

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will soon appoint his new cabinet

Canada among three G20 countries least likely to hit emissions targets

It says Canada, South Korea and Australia are the farthest off

Conservatives’ Scheer wants Trudeau to open Parliament Nov. 25

That’s five days after Justin Trudeau is scheduled to swear in a new cabinet

Last remaining Centurion tank from the Korean War makes its journey ‘home’ to B.C.

Tank arrives in B.C. the day before Remembrance Day after a more than 4,500-kilometre transfer

Canadians mark Remembrance Day this morning

This year exactly 101 years to the day after the end of the First World War

Devils strike early, hang on for 2-1 win over Canucks

Vancouver now 0-8-3 in last 11 games versus New Jersey

Most Read