Brock University breaks ground on 2021 Canada Summer Games athletic campus

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By Robin MacLennan

Ontario Construction News staff writer

Brock University has officially broken ground on the Canada Games Park athletic campus, a facility that will serve as the centrepiece for the 2021 Canada Summer Games.

The complex, being built by Brampton-based Aquicon Construction is a cornerstone in Niagara’s successful bid selected by the Canada Games Council over three other communities — Sudbury, Ottawa and Kitchener-Waterloo.

It’s located on the university’s main campus, and the land is valued at $12 million and is part of Brock’s in-kind donation to the Games. Previously, it housed a parking lot, baseball diamonds and unused green space.

“As we started this journey, it was a thought, a little crystal of an idea,” said Brock chairman Gary Comerford at a  ground-breaking ceremony on Dec. 16. “We had no idea it would end up where it has, but it takes people with vision, stamina and guts to make it happen. At the end of the day, everyone came through.”

The Games are Canada’s largest multi-sport event. They will run Aug. 6 to 21, 2021, drawing more than 5,000 athletes and coaches to Niagara.

Brock is also hosting the athletes’ village, providing residences, dining halls and other services on campus.

The Games facility will feature two ice rinks, a gymnasium, an outdoor track, cycling centre and beach volleyball courts.

“This new legacy facility is going to bring our community onto the Brock campus. It’s going to share with our community here in Niagara the spirit and the education that can only be realized on a campus like Brock’s,” Comerford said.

Brock has partnered with the Niagara Region, City of St. Catharines and City of Thorold to own the building and will join St. Catharines and Thorold in operating it.

In addition to housing two ice rinks, a gymnasium, an outdoor track, cycling centre and beach volleyball courts, Canada Games Park will also have room for Brock research activities and will be home to the Brock-Niagara Centre for Health and Well-Being.

During the Games from Aug. 6 to 21, 2021, Brock will be heavily involved as a host of the Athletes’ Village, where the competitors and coaches will be housed, as well as hosting swimming and other events.

But the University is also taking an academic approach.

“We’re making this a research games in a way that no Canada Games has been before,” said Vice-President, Research Tim Kenyon. “It’s about the community, about Brock University and about bringing the talent and insight of our researchers into the entire games ecosystem.”

Funding is now available to help Brock faculty members who either want to take on Games-related research projects or teach related content in their courses. The University has also created the Brock University Volunteer Association to encourage students to get involved in the 2021 Canada Games and other community events.

Brock has partnered with the Niagara Region, City of St. Catharines and City of Thorold to own the building and will join St. Catharines and Thorold in operating it.

In addition to housing two ice rinks, a gymnasium, an outdoor track, cycling centre and beach volleyball courts, Canada Games Park will also have room for Brock research activities and will be home to the Brock-Niagara Centre for Health and Well-Being.

During the Games from Aug. 6 to 21, 2021, Brock will be heavily involved as a host of the Athletes’ Village, where the competitors and coaches will be housed, as well as hosting swimming and other events.

But the University is also taking an academic approach.

“We’re making this a research games in a way that no Canada Games has been before,” said Vice-President, Research Tim Kenyon. “It’s about the community, about Brock University and about bringing the talent and insight of our researchers into the entire games ecosystem.”

Funding is now available to help Brock faculty members who want to take on Games-related research projects or teach related content in their courses. The University has also created the Brock University Volunteer Association to encourage students to get involved in the 2021 Canada Games and other community events.

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