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"This is great news."
That is the reaction of Linda Peters, Executive Director for Steinbach Chamber of Commerce in response to the announcement that Steinbach Credit Union is staying downtown.
Steinbach City Council has approved a memorandum of understanding to sell several parcels of land to Steinbach Credit Union so it has enough parking for its new building. The $1.3 million will go into a reserve fund for a new recreation and cultural multiplex to be built downtown. The city has also offered to sell the curling club to the Credit Union for $295,000 and then build a new curling rink in cooperation with the Steinbach Curling Club. That part of the deal requires ratification by the Curling Club.
Peters (right inset) says the Chamber recently polled its members to determine the level of interest in having SCU remain downtown. "The response was overwhelmingly in favour," she says. Peters adds it wasn't only businesses in downtown Steinbach that showed approval. "It was all of our members as well as many other business contacts that we had in the area. And so the responses came from people who were right downtown as well as people who are more on the outskirts, along Highway 12, along Brandt Road, the responses came from all over and were overwhelmingly in favour of still having SCU remain downtown."
Furthermore, Peters credits the foresight of Mayor Chris Goertzen and the rest of council in being proactive to ensure that downtown Steinbach remains a vibrant core of the community.
Peters says the mission of the Steinbach Chamber of Commerce is to unite and represent Steinbach and area businesses. For that reason they conducted the survey and then presented the findings to both city council and Steinbach Credit Union. "The Steinbach Chamber of Commerce itself wasn't necessarily wanting to sway it one way or the other," she says. "We simply wanted to make sure they were hearing the voice of the business community in making their decision."
Having a multiplex will provide so much more opportunity for Steinbach, notes Peters. She says hosting large conferences and events is something they've often wanted to do but never had the proper facilities.
"Having our SRSS graduation be able to be in a location in Steinbach would be huge," she adds.
Furthermore, she says Steinbach has attracted a lot of diverse groups over the last decade, and this multiplex will enable the different cultural groups to have their interests served as well.
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