Saanich Commonwealth Place to continue as a high performance venue

September 19, 2019

News release

For immediate release

Saanich Commonwealth Place to continue as a high performance venue

Saanich, BC – Saanich Council voted unanimously to continue providing high performance sport organizations and clubs with preferred access to Saanich Commonwealth Place (SCP) after a 25-year operating and funding agreement with the federal and provincial governments ends in August 2020.

The original operating agreement, signed in 1994, detailed how high performance sport would have special access to SCP’s aquatic facilities, including a $330,000 annual contribution from the provincial and federal governments toward facility operating and maintenance costs. The partial funding, provided through a trust fund also established in 1994, helped off-set Saanich’s cost of providing dedicated water and support space for both high performance training and competitions.

Opened in 1993, SCP was designed as the 1994 Commonwealth Games aquatics venue and as Saanich’s fourth community recreation facility. This dual role means Saanich residents can train alongside high-performance athletes, including Pan-American Games, Commonwealth Games, and Olympic Games medalists.

“Saanich residents value SCP as an integral component of the Saanich’s Parks and Recreation Department offerings,” said Mayor Fred Haynes. “Residents also appreciate that it plays an important role in the region’s economy as a competition venue hosting athletes and spectators from across Canada and around the World. SCP is a municipal facility with a regional impact. We’re excited to know that it will continue its vital dual role as a contributor to both our social and economic well-being.”

Council’s decision will require sport organizations to pay a six per cent annual increase in usage fees starting in 2020. Saanich will also increase its tax-generated SCP operating funding by roughly $300,000 per year. The additional funds are necessary to cover the facility’s annual operating costs, which in 2018 totalled $2.3 million.

In response to the 2018 Recreation Market Analysis report that showed Saanich residents have a strong desire for increased access to aquatics activities, Council endorsed recommendations to include more time for residents.

Learn more

Read more about SCP at


Media contact:
Charlene Parker
Manager, Saanich Commonwealth Place