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Orillia Recreation Centre could be complete 'within next few weeks'

The $55-million project, beset by delays and increases to contingency fund, is finally nearing completion, according to a staff report
Gym floor installation - May 21 2020
Work is nearing completion on the installation of the wood floor in the gymnasium of the Orillia Recreation Centre. This much-anticipated facility has been delayed by almost two years but is a matter of weeks away from completion. City of Orillia photo

While the pandemic will likely mean the Orillia Recreation Centre will not be open to the public anytime soon, work on the $55.4 million facility on West Street South should be complete with the next few weeks.

In a memo to city councillors Friday - an update is provided every month - city staff noted that the work remaining at 255 West St. S. is “being tracked for completion within the next few weeks.”

The much-anticipated opening of the multi-use facility - which features an aquatic centre, double-gym, fitness room, running track among other amenities - is almost two years behind schedule.

Most recently, the work has been delayed due to COVID-19 restrictions, although staff stress there have been “no reported cases of COVID-19 on the site.”

In the memo to city councillors, staff noted the following milestones:

  • Pool timing/pace clocks are completely installed;
  • Ceiling tile installation in all change rooms is about 70% complete;
  • Most countertops, faucets, hand dryers and toilets have been installed in both the main and lower level change rooms and washrooms;
  • Mirror installations are nearing completion;
  • Washroom stall and shower divider installation are nearing completion;
  • The gymnasium wood floor installation has commenced. The sub-floor is completely installed and the maple flooring installation is underway;
  • The installation of the wooden tops on all bleacher benches is complete;
  • Phenolic panel installation around the track is nearing completion;
  • The rubberized flooring on the running/walking track has commenced;
  • All millwork is nearing completion including the main reception on the entry level and the reception counter in the fitness area;
  • IInterior glass installation is almost complete;
  • Special steel accent panel installation is almost complete on all three levels;
  • The central feature stairway has been installed and is awaiting finishing details;
  • Interior painting (final coat) continues throughout various parts of the building;
  • Interior doors are installed and are being painted;
  • The multi-function rooms are about 90% complete. Room divider movable curtains are installed;
  • Life safety systems installation is nearing completion; and
  • One of the emergency generators has been serviced, commissioned and is awaiting final load testing. 

Site work, outside, is also continuing.

Staff note preparations are underway to install the final layer of asphalt in the main parking lot. The sodding/seeding and landscaping will also be completed soon. 

Some trees did not survive the winter and will be replaced under warranty. 

The rear retaining wall is 90% complete. 

The following milestones are being tracked for completion within the next few weeks: 

  • Telephone and data cable installation will be complete;
  • All lighting and electrical circuitry will be complete;
  • The gymnasium wood floor will be complete;
  • Final landscaping and site seeding will commence;
  • Final asphalt for parking lot will be completed;
  • Running track surface membrane installation will be complete;
  • Pavers at the main entrance will be completed;
  • All interior and exterior doors will be painted and hardware will have been installed including the electronic door access system;
  • Ceiling tile installation in various areas will be completed;
  • Railing installation at the west and east gym viewing area will be completed;
  • Phenolic panel installation will be completed;
  • Bench and table tops are being installed in the rear courtyard;
  • Main level concrete floor final pour will be complete;
  • All interior glass will have been installed;
  • Millwork will be completed in reception areas and cabinets in the Sport Hall of Fame will be installed;
  • The front entrance doors will be installed; and
  • Interior building signage installation be completed.

The staff report also provided an update on change orders; these include both credits for removal of work and additions for work not specified in the original tender documentation.

To date, the value of all changes is $3.18 million. After two increases to this contingency fund - raising it to $3,935,000 - there remains more than $700,000 in this fund.



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Dave Dawson

About the Author: Dave Dawson

Dave Dawson is community editor of
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