- 1. Will there be an elevator or other lift in the hall to make it truly accessible for all?
Yes. As it turns out, most of the activities will be on the main floor, however, there will be a small elevator from the main to second floor for those requiring mobility assistance and unable to navigate the stairwell. Although it was not clearly identified on the preliminary floor plans presented we have incorporated an elevator into the design.
- 2. Could there be more natural light?
The current design has 28 windows and four double doors with windows in them, providing more than 400 square feet of natural light. Use and placement of windows has been balanced with concerns of security, glass breakage, and construction costs.
- 3. Could there be a designated preschooler room where toys can be visible?
By the very name ‘multi-use facility’ very few areas are dedicated to one particular user group for their sole usage. All user groups accessing the facility will be offered the option of a storage area, with size varying by need. In the interests of safety, hygiene and thefts we encourage all groups to store their equipment in the secure storage areas provided when not in use.
- 4. Would there be a benefit to a larger kitchen?
The proposed kitchen area will be larger than the current one but is not anticipated to be a ‘commercial’ type kitchen. The feasibility study indicated that most events serving food in facilities like ours will use a catering company, who cook the meals off site and are looking for refrigerators and preparation tables in the hall kitchen for serving. The cost of equipment and maintenance of a larger, commercial type kitchen outweighs the demand.
- 5. Why no variation in external “depth of face” vs. a square box design that seems basic and plain?
Many factors have been considered in developing the designs presented, including cost, length of time to construct, ongoing maintenance, lot size available, security/vandalism and architectural fit within CKE. Many factors have been considered in developing the designs presented, including cost, length of time to construct, ongoing maintenance, lot size available, security/vandalism and architectural fit within CKE. The rectangular footprint maximizes our use of allowable lot size and presents the most economical building with the most usable space. This in turn gives us the shortest construction time which is important as the months without any hall during construction are months without any revenue. From a security standpoint, it is desirable to have fewer alcoves that can conceal illicit behaviours and more straight line walls that increase lighting and visibility. The exterior has been designed to be maintenance free and look similar to a home in the community and makes use of similar exterior treatments such as clad windows, Hardie Board (or similar) siding, and stone wainscoting on the front elevation.
- 6. Is there a space for artists?
There are several spaces that artists both young and old could utilize, depending on the size of the group, and securely store their supplies when not in use. Watch for more information on ways that artists can help decorate our new facility in the coming months.
- 7. Will it be “young child” friendly?
The hall is being designed to accommodate all CKE residents, regardless of age. The concept of a multi-use facility is just that: one that can serve a variety of needs for a variety of different activities and activity groups.
- 8. Have you incorporated ‘green ‘ initiatives such as solar panels? Windmill? Geothermal?
The south facing roof will house more than 1,000 square feet of solar panels, providing electrical energy to the hall and lower our operating costs. The aesthetics of windmills are not something that many of our residents would want to look at on a daily basis and the cost versus benefit of geothermal heating did not make it a viable option for our facility.
- 9. Could you move the living room to the back of the building to allow garden access?
The ‘living room’ concept is a flexible area but predominantly one of an informal gathering, drop-in type of space. In juggling the priorities and locations of the various components of the hall, it was determined that the living room should be in the current proposed spot for a number of reasons:
- to be closest to the main entry and most accessible to the street and parking area for those with mobility restrictions
- to allow the living room to be an area where people could congregate while waiting for their activity to begin somewhere else in the hall or for a ride to pick them up after their event
- in the interest of acoustics and noise segregation, the dance studio was located at the back portion of the hall on the second floor, above the maintenance garage, and specifically not above the living room
- 10. Will there be more programs for young children?
The new hall is being designed to serve all residents of CKE, and offer programs that meet the needs of the residents as demand dictates. Additionally, outside groups will have the ability to rent the facility and offer programs to CKE residents as our current model does, as the groups see as economically viable.
- 11. Happy to see the thermometer growing with more funds but… Is there a Plan B if we don’t raise the $1.65 million?
I wish we had a Plan B… okay, you’re right, I don’t want a Plan B. Unfortunately, it’s a new hall or no hall at this point. Our existing hall is well past the “Best Before” date and we have registered it as a Parks Foundation project for reconstruction. A new hall has to replace the current building or we won’t have a hall.
- 12. We already support other charities but want to help – what other ways can we contribute to this community initiative?
The Big Wheels RAFFLE is a great way to help raise considerable funds without spending money. Everyone can sell a few tickets to family, friends and work colleagues that live outside CKE. Additionally, there are businesses around the southwest part of the city that have allowed us to park the shiny new Acura at their site and sell tickets to their patrons. We would love to have you out to meet some of your neighbours at the booth and sell some tickets. We’ve been at the Market on Macleod twice already and it’s been fun. Drop us a line and we’ll get you some tickets to sell or let us know a shift or two you are willing to provide your CKE spirit at the booth! Email [email protected]
for more info about getting involved with the Raffle.
- 13. I’ve been reading Ask Tony and I think most people find your answers pretty helpful, but in fairness I haven’t seen any real prickly questions either. If I have a question I don’t want in the public domain will you send me a personal reply instead?
I’m glad you asked! Please email [email protected]
with any questions you have about the project, and if you don’t want your reply to make the papers just specify that in the first line. We answer them all, and most make the newsletter but by all means we can keep it between you and me, and Susan, who polishes up my chicken scratch into the replies you see here. That’s what this column is all about, answering your questions to keep everyone informed on this great project! Our door (and email inbox!) is always open.
- 14. Our family has committed to monthly giving for 18 months but is there going to be more income needed once the new hall is built? We are nervous about how long we can continue to help fund this project.
On behalf of the entire community THANK YOU for doing what you can right now. That’s what this is all about — doing whatever we can in support of building the new hall and making this the best community we can be. The great news is that the NEW HALL will be FINANCIALLY SUSTAINABLE! I live here too and I had the same concerns as you when this new hall discussion first started, in the afterglow party when we built the new playground just west of the hall. You can always modify your monthly donation amount too to ensure it’s comfortable for you and your family. We conducted a feasibility study and polled the community before launching this campaign, to see how the needs and wants of residents matched with what is sustainable financially in the long term. We really analyzed the data and spent a lot of time listening, looking at other halls and seeing what SW Calgary was lacking. In response, we put a great deal of effort in to ensure the new building will not cost the community any more money. Programs that go into the hall will be self-sustaining and designed to economically support the future of the hall for many, many years to come. Maintenance and utilities are also a big cost for our community today. By using 2016 technology, design and materials we can lower the ongoing operating and maintenance costs for the new facility below what we pay today with more than twice as much usable space. It’s a no brainer that even I understood when they showed me the numbers!
- 15. Do you accept in-kind donations? How about stocks?
Absolutely! Although our Treasurer, Doug, says we can no longer accept furs, tobacco or Hudson Bay blankets there are still lots of more modern ways to contribute. Goods and services can be donated in-kind which saves CKE from having to purchase those goods or pay for those services. There are guidelines around which of these qualify, so if you are considering such a contribution please contact me right away and we will see how we can accommodate your generos ity. Signing over stock certificates is another way to contribute that can help us reach our fundraising goal. Fully tax deductible through our partnership with the Parks Foundation, the donation of corporate stock is something we can help facilitate so please drop me a line and we will get the ball rolling.
- 16. Many community members are excited about new programs that may be offered at the new hall. What can we look forward to in the ways of new programming?
The new hall is being designed to serve all residents of CKE and can offer programs that meet the needs of our residents as demand dictates. Additionally, outside groups will continue to have the ability to rent the facility and offer programs to CKE residents as it remains economically viable for those outside groups to do so. Certainly, by building a space that can be used for a wider range of activities, we hope it will continue to attract rental from outside groups to continue to serve the wide range of interests we have in our community, but it is a CKE facility first and foremost . We anticipate everything from sports and recreation activities to coffee times, to fundraisers to music classes. Within the new hall, we look forward to continuing to offer all of the programs that we currently offer, plus more! Feedback from our resident survey conducted in 2013 informed us that our residents did not support a large hall that had a lot of traffic coming and going from our neighbourhood. Survey results also told us that we didn’t want to have to have paid staff at the hall full-time to manage all the program participants. That being said, by designing a multi-purpose facility there is really no limit on the programming that the residents of CKE could benefit from.
- 17. I would love to see more open gym time for our kids and families to enjoy sports during the long winter months. Will that be available to us?
Our residents have spoken and we heard loud and clear that they want a space to practice and play sports inside, especially during the winter, so we are building our new hall to support that as best as we can given the size, budget and practicality limitations. For example, while the multi-purpose area may not be a regulation size for a sanctioned event in a particular sport it could more than adequately house training and practice times or even exhibition games. And my wife continues to tell me that not all sports need to be competitive! So we also look forward to our hall being a gathering place for residents of all ages in our neighbourhood to be able to use the gym for fun games of drop-in basketball, volleyball, floor hockey, racket sports… you name it!
- 18. I don’t play sports. What else can the gym be used for?
The multi-purpose room is often referred to as the gym, but it truly is a multi-purpose area designed for use for a much wider variety of activities. Martial arts and fitness groups, theatre troupes, art guilds, and our existing church clients are have all expressed an interest in using the new hall. The facility will also be a great place to hold a birthday party, family reunion, milestone anniversary or small wedding. So use your imagination, and if your activity could take place in a large, bright area with lots of your great CKE neighbours it can probably happen in the new hall!
- 19. I live near the hall and am concerned about increased traffic to the area. What are your plans to mitigate increased traffic to our neighbourhood?
The good news is we all live near the hall and would love to be able to walk or bike there to enjoy programs and events. I live very close to the hall myself so this potential issue has been top-of-mind for me from the beginning. The key thing to know is that most of the programs offered at the hall are attended by CKE residents, and that is our plan for the future. This should see little increase in vehicular traffic to the neighbourhood. For those who do bring their cars, we will be making the existing parking lot slightly larger and more efficient. We also have an agreement with Henry Wise Wood High School, located adjacent to the CKE hall, to be able to use their parking lot in the evenings, on weekends, and other times when school is not in session. During periods of construction, visible signage will be posted to notify residents of impact to the neighbourhood. We will also give residents advance notice of upcoming demolition and construction dates. As always, I am happy to answer any of your questions or concerns directly. My door (and email inbox) is always open!