Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021 Calgary, AB – Jeromy Farkas, Ward 11 Councillor, will present an
urgent Notice of Motion calling on City Council to enter talks with the YMCA to save the recentlyclosed Eau Claire facility.
“This most recent closure is a wake-up call and a body blow to business confidence in the core,”
“After years of tax increases on local businesses, hikes on parking fees, the opening of the drug
site and the closure of the downtown police station, Calgarians feel like Council has given up on
downtown. Council must take a stand and make clear to these residents and businesses that they
have not been abandoned. Not here, not now, not on our watch.”
In a letter to members, the YMCA said that the Eau Claire location has “been seeing rising costs,
a diminishing membership base, extensive capital requirements and challenges in the downtown
COVID-19 closure orders have heightened the impact of the down economy on this treasured
Farkas’ motion puts a number of options on the table to save the facility, including profit sharing,
parking fee relaxations and joint operations. His motion emphasizes the importance of a “big
picture” strategy to ensure that downtown Calgary remains a viable place to live and invest.
The city has a successful partnership with the YMCA to operate facilities in Crowfoot Rocky Ridge,
Seton, Quarry Park, Shawnessy, and Saddletowne. The Eau Claire facility is owned and operated
solely by YMCA Calgary.
“This isn’t just about a building. This is about our community, our economic success, and the
future of downtown. Council must not allow this downtown death spiral to continue,” Farkas
Farkas’ proposal for the City to enter into talks with the YMCA will be considered at the March 1,
2021 Council meeting.
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