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     History & Guiding Principles for the PRRA:  


  To provide and support recreation, leisure and community facilities and programs for the benefit of all citizens in the Portage la Prairie Region.

As enshrined in the By-Laws, the Portage Regional Recreation Authority, on behalf of the City of Portage la Prairie and the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie and for the benefit of the citizens of those Municipalities shall:

1.       conduct the management and administration of:


         services and



         public sporting

         recreational, and

         leisure activities


2.   provide advice and recommendations to the City and the RM on the provision of:

         public sporting,

         recreational, and leisure activities for its citizens

 INCLUDING where appropriate:

         the acquisition, sale or zoning of land for public recreation purposes, and

         the construction and operation of new facilities and services.


  • Communication
  • Community Trust
  • Inclusion
  • Partnership
  • Respect”

    In the spring of 2006 the City of Portage la Prairie, the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie and the local adhoc Portage Recreation Committee (PRC) retained the services of Stantec Architecture Limited (Stantec) of Winnipeg and Professional Environmental Recreational Consultants Ltd. (PERC) of Vancouver to prepare a Recreation Needs Study. The final report, presented in early 2007, represented a needs assessment process with input from the citizens in the Portage la Prairie area, specific community group organizations and the PRC.

The purpose of the study was to provide credible information as a basis for decisions for a future indoor recreation facility in the City of Portage la Prairie. The process included an analysis of recreation and leisure needs, the development of space requirements, program/conceptual design, site analysis and recommendations and estimates of capital.

The study was a public process involving a public meeting, user group/stakeholder interviews and a public mail survey. This study assisted in creating vision for Portage la Prairie and helped to summarize the values and needs of the community. The study also reviewed existing recreation facilities including the Southport Aerospace Centre Inc. (SACI) indoor pool and the Portage Centennial Arena.

    Background Information:  
      In 1974 planning began on a proposed Recreation Complex to be located at the northwest corner of the Industrial Exhibition grounds and south east of the Golf Course on the Island. The complex was proposed to include a 3,120 seat arena, swimming pool (25 m), 8 sheet curling rink with kitchen and lounge facilities and multipurpose area consisting of several small meeting rooms. The anticipated cost was $4.2 million. The Rural Municipality of Portage had committed $311,250 and the City of Portage la Prairie had promised a financial contribution of $1,763, 750. The remaining funding was to be provided by the Province of Manitoba, service clubs and the Portage Curling Club. The Fair Board planned to make land available at no cost to the complex (13.1 acres for building and parking). The initiative was defeated by public referendum on October 22, 1975.

The Portage Recreation Committee is a grass roots community committee. It was formed in the spring of 2006 to further the growth and development of recreation opportunities in Portage la Prairie and district. Their primary function is to raise $3.4 Million dollars from the industrial, business and public sectors in support of the new facility.

On January 24, 2007, the Recreation Needs Assessment final report was released during a public open house at the Glesby Centre. Information gathered from over 1,600 surveys as well as from meetings with various stakeholder groups clearly indicated that a new indoor aquatic facility was the most desired in all respects. An arena facility to replace the aging Centennial Arena was also evident as a significant priority. 90% of survey respondents wanted an increase in recreational facilities, listing indoor facilities specifically.

On March 29, 2007 the City and RM of Portage la Prairie officially announced their partnership and formation of the Portage la Prairie Multiplex Committee and jointly announced their financial commitments to a new multi-sport recreational facility. The Portage Multiplex Committee consists of appointed elected officials from the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie and City of Portage la Prairie, administration and representatives from the Portage Recreation Committee.

On April 19, 2007, the City of Portage la Prairie established the Department of Recreation and Leisure Services to dedicate time and resources towards the development of the new recreation multiplex.

On July 16, 2007 the City of Portage la Prairie passed resolutions that the 2007 Financial Plan be amended to include the withdrawal of $2,200,000.00 from the General Reserve towards the design work of the multiplex and up to $10,000,000.00 in debt for the construction of the multiplex; By-Law No. 07-8371 authorizing the City’s request to borrow up to $10,000,000.00 for the construction of the multiplex was given 1st Reading; and authorization was given to send By-Law No. 07-8371 to the Municipal Board for approval.

August 14, 2007 the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie held the borrowing by-law public hearing.

September 20, 2007, the location of the new multiplex was announced. After careful consideration, the City and RM Councils, in partnership with the Portage Industrial Exhibition Association (PIEA) identified that the Fairboard property (owned by PIEA) on the Island was the most suitable site for the recreation multiplex. As this project is a community-based amenity, it was important to select a site that is centrally located to accommodate both pedestrian and vehicle traffic. The Island site complements existing amenities such as Splash Island, Island Park, the Fairgrounds, the Tennis Courts, the Portage Golf Course, the existing Campgrounds, the new Rotary Park Playground and the new Crescent Lake Pathway. In addition, this site presented the opportunity to efficiently manage the operations of both Splash Island and the new Indoor Aquatic Centre. The location will enhance the enjoyment of visitors to the complex as it will be nestled in the beautiful setting adjacent to Crescent Lake.

The Capital Fundraising Campaign “A Place for You…” was officially launched November 15, 2007 and is an exciting opportunity for residents, businesses and community groups to share in making this new recreation multiplex a reality. Tax deductible public donations are also being accepted at City Hall or the RM office.

November 2007 – April 2008, a successful Naming Rights campaign led by the Portage Recreation Committee raises over $1 million for the project.

December 7, 2007 a public rally held at the Glesby Centre to raise awareness of and show support for the Multiplex project was co-hosted by MP Brian Pallister, and the City and RM of Portage la Prairie.

January 31, 2008, Manitoba Premier Gary Doer met with members of the Portage Multiplex committee at the Centennial Arena, where Premier Doer officially announced a $5-million provincial commitment to the project. The premier praised the community for the work that has been done towards this project, particularly the collaborations between the Rural Municipality and City of Portage la Prairie and the community with the private sector.

May 15, 2008 Class B Cost Estimate is received. Estimated project costs, the construction timeline and funding arrangements were shared during a public meeting at the Glesby Centre.

May 15, 2008 Class B Cost Estimate is received. Estimated project costs, the construction timeline and funding arrangements were shared during a public meeting at the Glesby Centre.

September 23, 2008 - City & RM Councils approve award of Tenders 1 & 2.

September 29, 2008 - Construction began.