Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart together announced a commitment of $22-million toward the construction of a new 150,000-square-foot International Trade Centre. The building will be located at Evraz Place in Regina, Sask.
“Both Agribition and Farm Progress are institutions here in Regina and major contributors to the Saskatchewan economy,” said Ritz, in a press release. “This investment provides a world-class venue that will draw international visitors to Saskatchewan to get a firsthand look at Canada’s dynamic agriculture industry.”
“Our government is proud to invest in the International Trade Centre,” said Stewart, in a press release. “This multifunctional facility will make significant contributions to our province’s strong and diverse economy. It is going to be an important facility with the ability to attract and host a variety of large events that benefit trade and agri-business in our growing province.”
The goal for the International Trade Centre is to help enhance the standing of popular agricultural events such as Canadian Western Agribition and Canada’s Farm Progress Show, which are both responsible for significant agricultural-related spending and returns for the industry. It is also expected to attract new visitors and large events such as trade shows. The new facility will also connect existing buildings on the property, making it one of the biggest interconnected event facilities in North America.
“I am very proud of council for starting the work on this project, along with our team at Evraz Place,” said Regina Mayor Michael Fougere, in a press release. “As a city-owned facility, this venue will help increase the profile of Evraz Place and offer a lot more possibilities for events being held there.”
Evraz Place is a 102-acre site that is composed of multi-purpose event buildings, barns and sports and recreation facilities such as an arena and convention centre. The construction on the site will replace some old buildings and barns on the property and will be located between the Ag-Ex Pavilion and the Canada Centre complex.
“We are very grateful for this funding that will help to make the International Trade Centre possible,” said Mark Allan, president and CEO of Evraz Place, in a press release. “This project will take the facilities at Evraz Place to a world-class level.”
The City of Regina will also contribute to the construction on the site and will discuss its portion of the funding on July 27. The construction is expected to start in November of this year, and should be completed by November 2017.
The investment comes as part of Growing Forward 2, a joint effort between federal, provincial and territorial governments to support an innovative, competitive and profitable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.