City council delays vote on sports complex

City council postponed a vote on Monday evening that would have decided the fate of a proposed outdoor sports complex in the Whistle Bend subdivision.

City council postponed a vote on Monday evening that would have decided the fate of a proposed outdoor sports complex in the Whistle Bend subdivision.

That’s disappointing to Tony Gaw, head of the Yukon Outdoor Soccer Complex Association and one of the main proponents of the project.

“We’ve gone through this for a long time now and we think we’ve answered all their questions, and provided all the information that’s needed,” he said following the unanimous vote.

“We can’t understand why the city would make these decisions, especially for a facility like this that would provide so much benefit to everybody.”

At Monday’s meeting, council members were expected to debate the second and third reading of a zoning amendment bylaw for a parcel of land in Whistle Bend.

The Yukon government needs the city’s approval to build the seven hectare, $7-million project, which would feature two soccer fields with artificial turf and a rubberized track.

The government would own the facility and lease it to the association, which would manage the day-to-day operations.

But council has had reservations about the project since it was publicly brought up during a meeting in February.

Mayor Dan Curtis said he felt it was moving along too quickly, and wondered whether the city would be left on the hook for operations and maintenance costs in the future.

City council also expressed doubts about whether $50,000 would be enough to cover those costs annually, a figure that was mentioned in an earlier design proposal.

The territorial government has maintained it would look at covering any shortfalls in operations and maintenance costs.

Gaw maintains the city has known about this project for more than a year.

On Monday, Coun. Mike Gladish proposed a motion to postpone the vote for two weeks, saying he needed more technical information from city administration.

He suggested holding another council and senior management meeting, to get more input.

Some of the city’s questions about the project remain unanswered, he said in an email afterwards.

“I asked questions […] regarding the possibility of building part of the outdoor complex within the existing zoning,” he wrote.

“The question was not answered. Other councillors had similar questions during the week and wondered about options for different configurations for the fields and track.”

Meanwhile, Gaw said a request for proposal had been issued for the design of the complex and awarded to Associated Engineering, the same company that submitted a draft proposal last year.

“We’ve been going through the design process for the last week or two and hopefully we’ll be able to put it to use,” he said.

At a recent public hearing, nine residents with backgrounds ranging from Athletics Yukon to the Whitehorse Minor Soccer Association told council members about the benefits of having such a complex in Whitehorse.

They argued Whitehorse’s soccer and track-and-field facilities are in a state of disrepair, and preventing local youth from developing into better athletes.

Council also received 39 written submissions about the outdoor sports complex, 37 of them in favour of the project.

Second and third reading of the zoning amendment bylaw is now scheduled for the April 27 meeting.

Contact Myles Dolphin at

Just Posted

Silver rules out HST, layoffs and royalty changes

Yukon’s financial advisory panel has released its final report

City of Whitehorse budgets $30M for infrastructure over four years

‘I think we’re concentrating on the most important things’

Yukon community liaison for MMIWG inquiry fired

Melissa Carlick, the Whitehorse-based community liaison officer for the national Missing and… Continue reading

Yukon man holds no grudge after being attacked by bison

‘The poor guy was only trying to fend off someone who he knew was trying to kill him’

Straight and true: the story of the Yukon colours

Michael Gates | History Hunter Last week, I participated in the 150th… Continue reading

Get ready to tumble: Whitehorse’s Polarettes to flip out at fundraiser

‘There’s a mandatory five-minute break at the end, just so people don’t fall over’

Alaska’s governor goes to China

There are very different rules for resource projects depending on which side of the border you’re on

Yukon survey shows broad support for legal pot

But there’s no consensus on retail and distribution models

Yukon government releases survey on the territory’s liquor laws

Changes could include allowing sale of booze in grocery stores

Get family consent before moving patients to other hospitals: NDP critic

‘Where is the respect and where is the dignity?’

Bill C-17 passes third reading in House of Commons

The bill, which will repeal controversial amendments made to YESAA by Bill S-6, will now go to Senate

White Pass and Yukon Route musical chugs on without director

The cast and crew of Stonecliff are pushing forward without Conrad Boyce, who went on medical leave

Most Read