Community Stories

Construction at the Dawe is in full swing

March 10, 2022

When the doors open in 2023, Red Deerians will get their first glimpse of the new G.H Dawe Community Centre.

Construction is in full swing at the G.H. Dawe Community Centre. Over the last year, construction crews have been hard at work at the site and the building is starting to take shape. On track to open in January 2023, the new G.H. Dawe Community Centre will feature:

  • Two NHL standard arena surfaces
  • Expanded fitness area, with running track and two fitness studios
  • Outdoor spray park with washroom facilities
  • Fully accessible change space and pool deck party room
  • A new washroom in the Preschool program room
  • Additional north entrance + site access from 67 Street
  • Additional parking

“The countdown is on and we can’t wait to welcome Red Deerians to the transformed G.H. Dawe Community Centre,” said Barb McKee, Recreation Superintendent. “The new facility will truly offer something for everyone, and we look forward to offering new and innovative programs in these new spaces.”

Citizens will see their ideas reflected in many areas of the new facility, with two public engagement processes helping to shape the spray park and fitness programming. Last spring, we asked Red Deerians what they would love to see in a new spray park. Based on your ideas, the spray park is in the final stages of design and will be shared in the coming weeks. We also gathered ideas and input last fall from citizens about the type of active living programs they would like to see at the Dawe, which will shape the programs offered to residents when the facility opens.

“We want to ensure that our community is reflected in the new Dawe,” said McKee. “More than that though, we want the new spaces and amenities to meet the needs of the community.”

While the existing Dawe has remained open during construction for the most part, an extended closure is necessary to complete some critical work safely and efficiently. The facility will be closed from May 1 to June 25. During this time, we’ll be working on the water park accessible change room and program spaces. This work will result in the closure of the fitness room for the remainder of 2022, with some fitness equipment relocated to other areas in the facility as an interim measure. You can learn more about the closure in The City's news release.

The G.H. Dawe Community Centre project is a $44 million project and is jointly funded by the federal, provincial and municipal governments. With the Kinex Arena nearing the end of its useful life, the G.H. Dawe Community Centre Enhancement project was prioritized in an effort to maintain the number of arena surfaces available to our community, and to balance equitable amenity distribution, geographical needs and recreation opportunities across Red Deer. When the facility opens in 2023, the Kinex Arena will be decommissioned and demolished.

With construction on schedule and an anticipated opening planned for January 2023, City Council will consider a one-time funding request on March 16, 2022 to allow for the recruitment of facility staff in 2022. If approved, staff will be hired as needed throughout 2022 to prepare the building and develop programs and services in advance of the grand opening.

More information about the G.H. Dawe Community Centre project is available at