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10

Enhance the canoe-kayaking competition facility on Lake Banook

Showcase the best of what the Halifax region has to offer on an international stage with upgrades to the competition facility on Lake Banook.

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Current Stage

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    Initiation 
    To advance, the business case must be developed and approved. A sponsor should be identified, or a project manager assigned. Resources are approved and allocated.

Next Stage

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    Upgrades are completed in time to welcome athletes in advance of the world championships

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    A longer-term master plan is developed for further use of the facilities

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    Mid-term priority

Background

Lake Banook’s name comes from the Mi’kmaq word Panuk, meaning “at the opening / beginning”. As the first in a series of lakes, the Mi’kmaq have used it as a marine highway for thousands of years according to the Shubenacadie Canal Commission. The region is also at the beginning of new opportunities for this recreational hub; it will host the world canoe sprint championships in 2022 and requires updates to make it a word-class venue. Halifax Regional Municipal Council previously approved staff recommendations to make improvements to the facility in advance of the event, and an additional recommendation for further funding was made in September 2020 to allow for community use. Hosting water-based competitions that are accessible to spectators is a rare capacity in Canada, and this capacity aligns well with Halifax’s and Nova Scotia’s coastal brand.

A chance to appear on the international stage and welcome athletes from all over the world offers a critical opportunity for regional recovery. As a shovel-ready initiative, upgrades to the Lake Banook facility requires municipal, provincial, and federal support and will prepare us to welcome guests for the world canoeing championship as well as other events. The benefits will be widespread as an economic recovery effort, as well as providing outdoor recreational experiences for residents and visitors that are safe and good for our overall health and wellness.

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