Dorset Recreation Centre Update

March 2, 2023

The Township continues to make progress on the Dorset Recreation Centre rehabilitation project.

AH is finalizing a Request For Proposals that will be issued to five companies from whom the Township received Expressions of Interest to complete the necessary work at the facility. That RFP will be issued the week of March 6, closing in early April. Proposals will then be reviewed by Staff and Engage Engineering Ltd., which has been retained to assist with the process. 

During a December 8, 2022 meeting, Council chose a design-and-build model for the rehabilitation project. A report from that Council meeting can be found here. Discussion on the project has also been added as a standing item on the agendas for meetings of Algonquin Highlands Council. 

We know the closure of the Dorset Recreation Centre has been frustrating and that the facility is a vital and well-loved asset. We all look forward to the work getting underway. Continue to watch this space for ongoing updates and timelines. 

The Township of Algonquin Highlands is currently recruiting for a newly created Project Manager position, and part of the role of this staff member will be overseeing the work to remediate these issues and complete improvements to the building.

The discovery of issues at the DRC came in 2021 during a small-scale removal of a moisture-damaged area in the downstairs bathroom, and further investigation found the issue was widespread. The Township undertook a professional assessment to provide recommendations and cost estimates to repair the problem areas. As well as addressing insulation and waterproofing, pandemic-related provincial direction on ventilation requires improvements, with overall estimated costs of some $900,000.

To help alleviate the costs, the Township applied to the Ontario Trillium Fund for the mold/moisture related issue, a process which took four months. Unfortunately, that application was unsuccessful, so Council directed the costs be included in the 2022 municipal budget, specifically from Reserves. Luckily, the ventilation portion of the project has successfully received $100,000 in funding from the separate Investing in Canada’s Infrastructure Grant fund.

Once the contract for the project is awarded, a re-opening timeline can be determined. 

There is still lots happening so please take a moment to review the Township’s online recreation activity. Recreation staff are available to assist.

You can find the Activities Calender here


Contact Information

Dorset Recreation Centre
1051 Main Street, Box 99
Phone/Fax: 705-766-9968