A motion in City Council this morning officially awarded the bid for ice slab replacement at the Innovation Credit Union iPlex to a company from Regina.

A lack of sufficient insulation and drainage under the floor slab has been causing the floor slab of the Innovation Credit Union to rise and shift unevenly as the ground thaws and freezes. This caused Council to act quickly, approving $2.5 million from the 2017 budget to be approved for this project on November 21st, 2016.

The bid selected for this project is going to PCL Construction Management Inc. at a total of $1,624,000 - significantly less than the amount approved by Council last November.

Though the bid is nearly $900,000 lower than the amount approved by Council, General Manager of Community Services with the City, Dean Robson, shares added costs will be factored in.

"There is room under the $2.5 million but keep in mind there's also some engineering and other costs that will creep in. I'm still pretty confident we'll be well under the $2.5 million actually," he said.

A visit to the site to view the ice floor slab's condition was mandatory, and occurred on March 14th, 2017. PCL Construction, along with the other five companies who submitted bids reportedly expressed no concerns with a proposed September 15th completion date for the project.

Robson explains that September 15th was a proposed benchmark by the City, but it could be done in quicker fashion.

"Once the slab is good to go, there's some perimeter stuff, such as boards and glass, that can take place. As long as the slab is ready, we can start cooling and getting prepared to actually put ice in,"

The tentative start date for construction on the floor slab is April 3rd - which would only be delayed by a Swift Current Broncos playoff run.

On the other end of the project, September 15th serves as a date to have poured concrete by. A longer time-period will be needed for the floor slab to fully set, and be able to endure the ice-making process.

Robson says he would hope to have regular hockey activities started by the first week of October. This would mean pushing back the first regular season home game of the Broncos' 2017-2018 season, as well as directing training camps for multiple levels of hockey to the Fairview arenas.

The General Manager of Community Services says despite the heaving floor and bending pipes, the ice quality hasn't wavered.

"I'd still put our ice quality against anyone. We've been known as probably having the best ice surface for decades and I don't think that's ever changed. Even with us noticing imperfections in the existing slab, the ice has always been good," Robson said.

He expects the ice quality to remain at the top of the WHL once the new floor slab project is completed in the fall of 2017.

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