Dr. George MacLean, Vice-President Academic, UNB (Fredericton) and Mayor Mike O’Brien, City of Fredericton.

Update on New Regional Aquatics Facility

The City of Fredericton is pleased to announce that it has reached an agreement valued at $6 million with the University of New Brunswick (UNB) to provide initial funding for a new regional aquatics facility. 

“We are pleased to have come to an arrangement with UNB,” said Mayor Mike O’Brien. “Partnering on this initial contribution is a first step that took months to hammer out, but nothing concrete can go forward without other contributors at the table with us.”

The Sir Max Aitken pool on UNB’s Fredericton campus is scheduled to close in 2021, creating a huge void in the region’s aquatics offering. The university has committed to gift $3 million worth of land to the City if the new facility is to be built on Knowledge Park Drive. The city will contribute $3 million in cash, in addition to $3 million to reflect the value of the land. The current estimate for the construction of a new aquatics facility is $32 million.

“UNB is committed to the health and wellness of this province,” said UNB President Dr. Eddy Campbell. “We’re pleased to be able to donate $3 million worth of land as our contribution to a new facility. We are hopeful that this contribution means that our aquatics community does not go without a facility after the decommissioning of the Lady Beaverbrook Gym in 2021.”

“Attracting talent from around the world to our region means having modern amenities and facilities, and that’s something both the City and UNB could easily agree on,” Mayor O’Brien said. “I’m proud of this great first step and of all the work the supporters of the pool have done up to this point, and now we’re calling on other potential contributors to get involved.”

Mayor O’Brien says a capital campaign targeting potential contributors and partners needs to be launched. “The pool community has done a lot to keep this issue in the public eye. We now need their continued support as we move into the critical phase of a capital fundraising campaign for this important regional facility.”