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Monthly Project Updates

Project Update: February 2023

We hope you have seen a glimpse into the new facility as you drive along 67th street. The sneak peek through the windows as you're driving by at night is extra special. Our trade partners are working to wrap up the project and complete the remaining details as we prepare to unveil the space. We have hit a few snags that have resulted in a minor delay, but everyone has come to the table with a clear path forward in completion. 

Just a few details remain on the exterior of the building. Trades are working to complete the last bit of window caps, parapet flashing and soffits. You may have noticed the building signage that went up on the east and west faces of the building – we love how they turned out. We have some spring landscaping to complete around the building and are already anticipating spring with excitement for how the space will take its full form. For now, those spaces will be made safe around the facility until spring weather allows us to complete our remaining landscaping.    

Things continue to change very rapidly on the interior of the facility with each day marking significant changes! Mechanical and electrical trades are working on final fixturing, plating, and labelling along with starting the process of testing and commissioning. Drywall trades are working on final sanding, touch-ups, and installation of ceiling systems. Painters are working throughout the facility working on spraying the ceilings, painting railings and final coats of paint and touch-ups on walls. You might be able to see a sneak peek as you drive by at night of the second-floor public art piece. As you run around the track this incredible piece of art will take you on a journey of seasons. There are multiple artists working to install their pieces. The new feature stairwell has a familiar type of art that currently exists within the Dawe and is much loved; this “Wandering River” tile mosaic art piece is being installed now. Additionally, we have a cool metal art piece being installed that incorporates some creative seating elements. I am sure guests will be fascinated by this wonderfully engaging art piece. The second floor is working on wrapping up the final touches and is getting ready for fitness equipment to come in at the end of the month. The studios, fitness track and second floor space in general look spectacular and we cannot wait for you to join us for a workout!   

On the main floor level, the south arena is almost complete with netting being finalized and railings being painted. The ice slabs have been commissioned and with a few final touches and a good clean, City staff will start the ice making process. In the north arena, the dasher boards, glass, and bleachers are being installed. Lights and speakers are in place and once netting is completed in the south arena, the crew will move onto our north arena netting. Lights and scoreboards in both arenas will be going up soon. Railings for the north arena are being fabricated and will arrive on site for installation this month.   

The change rooms have flooring complete, whiteboards installed, benches in place and washroom fixtures installed. Some finishing touch-ups and a painted ceiling will wrap up those spaces this month. These spaces turned out great and we are confident teams and users of the facility will find these spaces accessible, spacious, and well laid-out. 

We can’t wait for you to walk into our new north entrance that is bright and inviting – a great hub for connection.  Stay tuned for details about our big grand opening event.

Past Updates on the Project

January 2023

The G.H. Dawe Community Centre construction site is busy with trades working extra hard to get to completion and bring the expanded facility dream to life.  The project team would like to thank all consultants, construction managers and trades partners who have worked tirelessly, extended hours, extra weekends and over the holidays to keep the project moving forward and adhere to the overall schedule.  As with all construction projects it seems there are always some challenges near the end, but the teams have worked well to mitigate risks and impacts, which has not gone unnoticed.  Every day significant changes take place within the facility, each day bringing the vision together. 

The outside façade of the building will be completed this month.  Window frames are being completed and crews continue to work on the white cladding wall front and they will install all of the roof caps once the wall white cladding is complete.  They are also working on the soffit under the main cantilever and front entrance.  There are a few more planter walls and sections of concrete to be poured in the front plaza space.  The planters will be filled with landscaping once spring arrives; we can’t wait for the plaza entry to be fully showcased this spring.  Signage on both the east and west sides of the building will be installed this month.  The almost finished signage is looking great and hope it has catches your eye as you drive by.

On the inside of the facility – every day marks significant changes.  The block walls are completed apart from a few touch-up spots, and framing and drywall are 95% complete within the facility.  The second floor now showcases an incredible public art piece that as you run around the track will take you on a journey of seasons.  When you look up from the north arena at the running track you can also see this spectacular public art piece. Our second floor millwork desk is installed and flooring is 75% complete.  The hardwood flooring in the fitness studios is absolutely beautiful and will be so functional for upcoming group fitness classes. Completion of the running track flooring is close and the majority of the rubber flooring in the fitness equipment areas has been installed.  For the most part the second floor is painted just needing a few touch-ups.  Mechanical and electrical crews are finishing final rough-ins and will be working on completing the final fixture installations.  Mirrors have arrived and are being mounted on site.  By the end of the month all the fitness equipment will be set up in the new space, along with TV’s and other furnishings.  Currently, the new elevator is being installed and will be operating by the middle of this month. 

On the main floor, the south arena has taken shape, the dasher boards, glass and bleachers are installed, our speakers and lights are up and the sound panelling is complete.  Crews are working to get the space cleaned up and ready to commission the ice plant and start the process of drawing down the slabs.  Netting and score clocks still need to be installed, it is really coming together.  The large glazing to the south rink from the main reception desk and into the existing facility is absolutely incredible, users will love the open feel of this space.

The north arena is 99% finish painted and final touch-ups are happening on site currently.  They are working on the sound panelling within the space and are 80% complete.  Crews will be working this week to pour the north arena bleachers so that benches can be installed by the end of the month.  They are also working on installing the low E ceiling which will be followed by lighting within the space.  By the middle of this month the dasher boards for the north rink will go in, followed by the netting and score clocks.  Again, this is such a bright and open space that we are excited for everyone to see!

We are nearing the completion line, we have a mass of trades working hard to turnover a quality-built project that all citizens of Red Deer can enjoy.  There is a big push to the finish line and we are confident that with CANA’s management and our hardworking trades we will be ready to showcase the facility to our community very soon. Stay tuned for details on when the public will be invited to rediscover the newly expanded G.H. Dawe Community Centre.

November 2022

Exciting times on site as the project approaches finishing stages! There will be some spring work as there wasn’t enough time in the season to complete some of the exterior paving, landscaping and curbing work. Our team was thankful for an extended fall season that allowed us to get a large portion of the outdoor work completed. CANA will finish outdoor projects in the spring including the completion of the spray park.  

Work continues on the inside of the building as well as the exterior façade with the majority of the soffits complete, exterior panelling will be commencing this month. The north rink slab has been poured and cured, ready for the ice components to be installed. Speciality crews continue to work on the plant for the ice rinks and will be wrapping up and starting to commission near the end of the year. Majority of the drywall and framing scope is completed and by the end of the month will be finished. An exciting public art piece on the 2nd floor running track will be installed by the end of the year. Painters have completed the roof structure on the south rink and will move onto the 2nd floor followed by the north arena structure. Bleachers are now formed and will be poured this month. Before the end of the year the glazing, dasher boards, finish lighting and netting will all be installed. Crews continue working on arena dressing rooms; each trade following each other as they work from completing the masonry scope, mechanical and electrical rough-ins and then the finishes. Glazing frames are installed on the second floor and glass have been ordered. Flooring will start the beginning of December on the second floor.  

As you walk or run around the track, you will have incredible views of the ice surfaces, the facility and vision are looking vibrant!

October 2022

This month we are very thankful for the weather. A warm fall season sure helps meet a large number of deadlines we had before winter arrives. If you have driven along 67 Street you may have noticed a small building on the east side of the site, this is the new spray park.  The building is up, painted and the roof is installed. We have specialty crews working on the rough-ins for the spray pad, laying the water lines and installing the connections for each of the individual spray elements. Our goal is to have the pad poured by the end of October.  Although some work will continue in the spray park area and building, the rest of this project will be completed in Spring 2023 so we can open the spray park next summer.

The team has been focusing their efforts on the exterior scopes of the new G.H. Dawe Community Centre, completing sidewalks, curbs, paving and landscaping. A large portion of this has been completed and will continue until completed near the end of the month. Crews have started the facia and soffit work on the front of the building. The windows are installed on site which allows the building to be fully weather tight now. The finish coat of paint is on both the main facility and spray park facility precast. The exterior steel doors and frames have been painted and are being installed. Inside the new facility a lot of work has happened and it is really starting to take shape. 

The heating and cooling lines along with specialty slab preparation for the north arena is on-going with the intent to have it poured near the end of October. Once the north arena is poured, all the concrete slabs will be complete. Crews are busy inside working on block walls, rough-ins and framing. The second floor rough-ins and framing are roughly 75 per cent complete and drywall is on about 50 per cent complete in the areas required. Blockwork on the second floor is complete and on the main level blockwork for the arena change rooms is on-going. The main corridor is complete so the mechanical and electrical corridor rough in can commence.   

We are nearing the start of the project’s finishing stage and it is very exciting to see the vision come to life.

September 2022

Things are moving along on site quite nicely and the weather as of late has helped. If you have driven by our site, you may have noticed hat things are starting to take shape on the outside of the building.  The steel framing for the new fascia wall is complete and metal cladding will be starting this month. There will be new building signage installed on the west face of the building, which is the prime spot for future visitors accessing site from the new right in, right out on 67 Street. The new access is a right in so visitors travelling eastbound on 67 Street and will have a great view of the new building signage. Roofing is almost complete with the cap sheet being worked on currently and expected to be wrapped up by the end of the month. Sidewalk and curb structures are being formed and poured. At the start of the month our new east parking lot was paved and the first lift of asphalt was installed on the new 67 Street access and around the tear-drop shape island, the second lift and west parking lot is expected to be paved by the end of the month. As we get closer to October, landscaping work will start on the east side of the site. The east side of the site is also where the new spraypark is going and work started last month in bringing this piece of the project to fruition. The storm line connection for the spraypark was installed and the new piles for the building foundation were put into place. The precast panels for the building are expected mid-September and will really make this area of the project take shape. Our speciality contractor is hard at work starting the prep and undergrounds for the new splash pad which will be poured in the coming months before freeze up.  

On the inside of the building, lots of progress has taken place. Mechanical, electrical and our specialty ice slab contractors are mostly completed undergrounds which is a huge milestone. The piping for the north rink slab has started and has progressed significantly. All of the main floor slabs, apart from the north arena slab have been poured and about 90% of the second floor has also been poured. Trades continue on rough-ins. On the second floor, the walls have been framed, block has been installed and drywallers are currently working on boarding these areas. The masonry crew has moved back to the main floor where about 50% of the block has been completed, they will now finish out with the change room walls which is a large scope of the project. The plant equipment arrived on site and is starting to be installed. 

Updated photo of G.H. Dawe facilityUpdated photo of G.H. Dawe facilityUpdated photo of G.H. Dawe facilityUpdated photo of G.H. Dawe facility

July 2022

Work continues to progress, but the recent weather conditions (aka rain!) have slowed us down. Our contractor, Cana, and their trade partners have made adjustments where possible to keep the work moving along. On June 26, the facility re-opened following an eight-week shutdown that focussed on interior renovations taking place within the aquatics area and child-minding spaces. Roofers have been on-site, working around the rain to install the new roofing on the new arena. They continue to work on the tie-ins to the existing building; everyone is eager to get things weather-tight so that rain will be less of an impact. 

The steel exterior structure is also being installed on the outside of the panels which will create our abstract exterior wall panel look that really gives our new facility an architectural flare. On the interior of the building, trades have been working on the south arena ice slab preparations and the north arena deep undergrounds.  One third of the second floor running track and gym area slab has been poured to allow for the start of framing of the second floor walls. Mechanical and electrical rough-ins continue throughout the spaces. Offsite work for the left-hand turn bay extension on 59th street and the new right-in, right-out for the site have began and are expected to be completed by the end of the month and will provide better access to and around the site. 

June 2022

If you’ve driven by the G.H. Dawe Community Centre lately, you would have seen considerable progress on construction. It’s been all hands on deck during the eight-week shutdown, with interior renovations taking place within the aquatics area and child-minding spaces. We’ve added a new fully accessible change room in the aquatics space, with adjustable lift and table, and accessible washroom and shower. We also added life guard office space, a new first aid room and a bookable meeting room right off of the pool for your next special event. This has temporarily shifted the existing gym space to the corridor until the full project completion which will see an exciting new gym space on the 2nd floor with workout equipment, a running track and studio spaces. New duct work was installed, and we completed renovations to the childminding space with the addition of a new washroom. 

Overall, we are getting close to being able to fully enclose the facility. Structural steel and precast elements on site are nearing completion and roofers are working on the roof tie-in’s as well as the new roofing over the facility. We have trades continuing rough-ins and slab preparations for the facility and ice surfaces. Block partition walls are being installed within the new spaces and work on the parking lot preparation has also happened. 

Recently, program staff at the Dawe staff got their first glimpse of the new spaces they will soon bring to life. Needless to say, they are very excited!

April/May 2022

The building is finally starting to take shape, especially with the installation of the precast panels and structural steel components. If you have driven by the site recently, you will have seen exterior walls, stairwell walls, and some interior walls, along with the second floor structure partially completed. Rough-ins continue with the mechanical and electrical trades, and some preparation for glazing and roofing is commencing. 

We expect to have the precast and structural steel work done near the end of May, which will allow for other trades to make progress on the interior.  The contractors will be working to fully enclose and seal up the building, with new roofing, glazing and door installations. They will also start to work on the exterior steel framing details on the front of the building.

March 2022

Spring is upon us on at the site, which has made for some muddy conditions at times, but progress is moving forward full steam ahead! If you have driven by site, you will see our precast panels being installed on site, along with the structural steel components. We are continuing with underground rough-ins inside the existing arena facility in preparation for the ice slab to be installed, while also completing the overhead rough-ins for the space. Our mechanical contractors, along with CANA, worked hard to complete a complex directional bore for existing sanitary services that required a unique approach to the project. This was a large undertaking and we appreciated the innovation that went into making it a success.

February 2022

Foundations are now complete, and we are eagerly awaiting the arrival of the precast panels which should be arriving on site this month. In preparation for installing the precast panels, we will be installing some structural steel components. In January, a significant piece of work was completed with the removal of a big precast beam in the existing front desk area. If you visit the facility, you’ll see temporary shoring posts in place in this area; these were installed to support the roof so that the beam could be demolished. A new steel beam will go in its place very soon and the temporary shoring will be removed.  We’ve also continued with electrical and mechanical rough-in work and started slab preparation for one of the new rink surfaces. The building is really starting to take shape!

Dawe Feb 2022 Update

December 2021

The project is finally seeing the end stages of a large, complicated, complex and mostly unseen scope of work: the underground utility and site work. Although a few tasks remain to be completed and wrapped up in spring next year, our site is prepared for the building to take form. CFA concrete piles were installed over the last month and crews are now starting the foundation formwork, all of which will complete the building’s foundation system, in preparation for our precast wall system that will be arriving mid-winter. Keep your eyes peeled for the transformation that will take place on site once the precast arrives.

November 2021

Underground utilities – which was an extensive piece of work required that needed to be done prior to the start of building construction – is now largely wrapped up and  the focus has turned to foundation work. Piling is in full swing and will be completed mid-November, and foundation crews have mobilized to site and are starting the foundation formwork. Crews also continue to work on the gravel parking lot surface structure installation on site, installing geotextile fabric, pit run and crushed gravel to provide a more solid structure for moving around site this winter.  Precast panels are excepted to arrive on site mid-winter and that’s when the building will really start to take form. Mechanical and electrical trade partners continue to complete rough-ins and tie-ins around the site. 

October 2021

With winter quickly approaching, contractors are in high gear, taking advantage of the favourable weather conditions to get everything in place prior to freeze up. Underground utilities are nearing completion, marking the end of a large portion of work required to prepare for the new building. In October, you’ll likely catch a glimpse at our piling rig as you drive by. This project is using CFA (continuous flight auger) piling system, which is very convenient for the challenging soil conditions on site. This system drills to the specified depth of pile and then as the auger starts to come back up, pulling soil with it, concrete is pumped into the pile hole to fill the gap. After the concrete is poured to the top, a rebar cage is pushed into the pile and set in place. Once piling is completed, foundations will be formed and poured, all in preparation for the new precast panels to arrive on site early winter. Brick masons have also been on site working on some of the block work, and the mechanical and electrical trade partners continue to complete slab rough-ins and preparation work on site. This month our contractors will also be buttoning up the building to prepare for winter weather conditions.

September 2021

Lots of progress continues to be seen on the G.H. Dawe Community Centre Project. If you’ve driven by recently, you may have noticed some significant changes over the last month with demolition of sections of the existing building. This is in preparation for the foundation and piling work expected to commence in the next couple of months, with precast panels expected to arrive on site early winter. Underground utility work with storm, sanitary and water lines is moving along with the intent of being fully completed by the end of September/early October. Installation of a new transformer for the facility was also just completed.

Following a closure in the summer, the facility is now open, with the exception of the arena surfaces (please check for current COVID information related to facility operation).

August 2021

There’s been significant progress on the project in July, and we expect that the remainder of the summer/fall will be busy on site. Here are some highlights of work underway:

  • The site has been mostly stripped to the new grade elevation for the building and site area. 
  • Underground utility work with storm, sanitary and water lines continues this month and likely will wrap up fully in September. As a reminder, the sports fields are closed for the remainder of the season to accommodate this work.
  • The contractor is wrapping up select demolition and required abatement in the facility. 
  • Large demolition activities have started on site with the hallway and dressing rooms connecting the arena and gym now fully demolished. Over the next month, demolition work with continue in the arena, which is being stripped back to the structure. 
  • The teams continue to work towards foundation work this late summer so that precast can arrive late fall.
July 2021

It’s been a busy few weeks for the contractors, coordinating and lining up sub trades and working on execution plans for the project to move forward and run as smoothly as possible. Lots of other work is taking place this month as well:

  • Site work, site stripping and rough grading has started, with some material being hauled off site to be used at West Park Ball Diamonds for a project being completed there this summer. 
  • The existing fibre line that ran through the middle of the construction site is in the process of being re-routed with new conduit and infrastructure in place. 
  • Storm, sanitary and water work is expected to start middle of this month and will extend into August. As a result of this work, all sports fields will be unavailable for this season.
  • Preparation is underway for some interior demolition and remediation, which will commence the middle of July. 
  • The facility will fully close from July 26 to August 31.
June 2021

At the end of May, the contractor mobilized zed to site, setting up office trailers and fencing around the site. The team conducted a number of site and building investigations prior to start of construction activities on site and worked to on-board a number of local trades for the start of the project. Site work is expected to start middle of June and pending approvals, the contractors will begin underground service work that will extend from June into August. At the same time as this work is taking place on the site, inside the facility demolition will begin in preparation for the project tie-ins. Any disruptions to programs and activities on the site will be communicated, and it is anticipated that programming like summer camps and fitness activities to be transitioned to another facility for the duration of interruptions.

May 2021

May 2021 – Project Update:

Starting in early May, 2021, local contractors will begin to mobilize on the site, with office trailers moved into place, and safety fencing set-up. Full site preparation will begin near the end of May.

Pending approvals, the contractor will begin underground service work that will extend between June and July. At the same time as this work is taking place on the site, inside the facility demolition will begin in preparation for the project tie-ins. Any disruptions to programs and activities on the site will be communicated, and it is anticipated that programming like summer camps and fitness activities to be transitioned to another facility for the duration of interruptions. 


G.H. Dawe Community Centre Project Site Plan (pdf)