News Release - September 14, 2007
INNOVATIVE BUILDING HOUSES ILE-A-LA-CROSSE SCHOOL AND HEALTH CENTRE
The people of Ile-a-la-Crosse celebrated the opening today of a unique building that combines the high school, a child care centre, the hospital, a long-term care wing, and community services and meeting spaces.
Health Minister Len Taylor, Learning Minister Deb Higgins and Highways and Transportation Minister Buckley Belanger joined with more than 700 northern residents and officials for the grand opening ceremony for the $33.7 million facility that serves a large area north of Meadow Lake.
Patients from the old St. Joseph's hospital moved into the new 11-bed hospital days before the ceremony, joining Rossignol High School students who began classes September 4.
"The Ile-a-la-Crosse Integrated Services Centre is a showcase for how people working together can exceed expectations," Taylor said. "This unique building will meet the health and education needs of this area for generations to come."
"Our goal is to ensure that all students in Saskatchewan receive a high-quality education and that they are given the supports they need to succeed in school and in life," Higgins said. "We are committed to building better futures and opportunities for our youth through initiatives like this."
"Thanks to the co-operation between the departments of Health and Learning, the Keewatin Yatthé Health Region, the Ile-a-la-Crosse School Division, and village leaders, we are making life better today, and better opportunities for our young people," Belanger said.
The two-storey, 8,500 square metre structure includes a gym, modern industrial arts labs, performing arts space, community meeting rooms, a child care centre and program spaces for Grades 7-12. Visitors to the health care section can access an 11-bed hospital, long-term care space for 17 residents, a family healing centre, labs, community health services, a health clinic and an emergency department.
"We were very honoured to have had so many people from near and far attend our grand opening celebrations," Keewatin Yatthé Health Region board chair David Seright said. "This new facility was built on the hopes and dreams of many. We acknowledge that, and remember their contributions."
"This integrated services facility will bring hope and inspiration to the people of our region," Ile-a-la-Crosse Mayor and chair of the local school division Duane Favel said. "The new high school will bring new creative ideas while the new hospital will bring better support and services. This facility provides a wonderful opportunity for us to renew our spirit and prepare ourselves for the challenges that lie ahead."
The use of a single building for multiple purposes allows for costs savings in construction, equipment, security, utilities and maintenance, and community use of some common rooms.
Construction of the health portion of the building was paid for by Saskatchewan Health, with the Keewatin Yatthé Health Region raising funds to pay for new equipment and furnishings. The educational part of the building was primarily funded by Saskatchewan Learning, with a portion paid by the Ile-a-la-Crosse School Division 112.
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