Possible New Bouldering Gym in Fredericton!

But first, we need you to do a survey! If you live in Fredericton or surrounding area, please take a few minutes to fill out this quick survey pertaining to the creation of a new gym in downtown Fredericton.

Fill out the survey below (please, only if you are a resident):

For the non-locals or the locals only hearing about this for the first time, here’s why this issue is important:

The UNB Rock and Ice Club currently exists under the umbrella of sports clubs from the University of New Brunswick. The university decided in Fall 2016 that they were tearing down the Lady Beaverbrook Gym (the gym in which our wall exists) and that their new building would not have space for a climbing wall. The gym will be decommissioned in Fall 2018 meaning that the club will be no more and Fredericton will be without a climbing gym. (Read What does a Non-Profit Bouldering Gym Look Like? for more info on our current gym.)

Despite our gym existing on campus, our memberships belong mostly to community members or alumni. We essentially operate as our own entity anyway, so this will allow for more freedom and the ability to customize more freely.

Here’s what has been established so far:

  • The new gym will be a new entity separate from the UNB Rock and Ice Club. This new entity will have a new name and will not be tied in any way to the university.
  • A location has been more or less secured in the plaza sitting on the corner of Dundonald St. and Smythe St. The gym will likely go in the warehouse directly behind Papa John’s. A deposit will be made sometime in the next couple of weeks.
  • Construction can theoretically begin in March 2018 once the lease begins.
  • Investors are needed. Start up costs run about $300,000. The club is fronting about 50,000$, but the rest of the money will have to come from grants, loans and investments from community members or businesses. That means you can contribute!
  • New Walltopia walls!
  • Optimism is high. The club has high hopes for the success of this gym.

Here’s what has not been established:

  • Whether or not the gym will operate as a not-for-profit gym, a for-profit gym, or a co-op. The consensus seems to be that a co-op will not work in this situation, so the debate is really between the first two structures.
  • How to raise the funds and what the incentives will be for investors. At this time, funding of the gym remains unknown but there are avenues available once the structure has been established.

A lot of information is needed before the club proceeds with anything, so please take the time to fill out the survey if you can! 🙂

**If you notice an error in the above information, please let me know. I am not on the committee and am not part of these decisions. I tried my best to remain unbiased and report solely from information obtained from the club meeting. **

4 thoughts on “Possible New Bouldering Gym in Fredericton!

  1. I think you should add the questions. How many in your household would come and climb? And asking the community what else they might like out of their frequent climbing gym? What’s the insentive for investors?

    1. Those are excellent questions. I will pass them along to Carlie (I only shared her survey).

      In terms of incentives, that’s the million dollar question. It really comes down to the structure. For example, if it was a co-op or not-for-profit then there could possibly be some sort of pay out at the end of each fiscal year based on net profit. Otherwise, it really depends on how they end up running the new gym, which is still undecided haha. Some people were talking about a discount on memberships, but I can’t remember their thoughts on that. I’m not part of the committee deciding these things, so this is only what I heard at the meeting. Things may have changed by now!

      Like you, I am also interested in the incentives… everyone wants to see a new gym, but at the same time everyone wants their money put to good use. 🙂 I’m sure they’d love to hear what incentives the public wants so if you have any suggestions, message a member of the exec!

  2. You might get more 30+ members if there was a top-rope option, not just bouldering. People with a history of joint injuries or pain may be interested in climbing, but may have reservations about dropping 6 to 8 feet even if the padding is very good. Keep in mind that older climbers may have money to spend on a membership or to invest, and they may bring their kids along with them, helping to build a solid base for the future.

    1. Great points! We do have a rope gym about 20 minutes out of town, but I do understand your argument. I believe there was talk of putting up a section with a few auto-belays for birthday parties, kids, or anyone who would like to prevent joint injury. With limited space and a small budget, the walls would still be boulder height unfortunately. Thanks for the feedback!

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