The Ville: A new idea
On Monday May 11, David Coon, MLA Fredericton South and Leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick pulled up in front of the once vacant Alexander Gibson Memorial School in Marysville. Despite the quiet exterior, the building itself was bustling with activity. A pressure test was being conducted on the sprinklers, the building owner was delivering goods and the man behind the vision for the facility was there with his kids to show David around.
When Jeff MacFarlane learned that the building had been sold to Steven How, a local investor, MacFarlane approached How with a concept for the space; he wanted to create The ‘Ville’. Together they have worked to create a community centre focused on health, wellness and sustainability. Though in its early stages, the space was already being rented to local sports teams and a consulting firm conducting employment counseling and training for under- and un-employed adults.
In the months since David’s visit to the site, McFarlane and How have continued to create partnerships with local artists, vendors, entrepreneurs, etc. Today The ‘Ville is renting space to yoga instructors, music teachers, seamstresses, martial artists, athletic associations and more. There are lots of opportunities to get involved as a partner or as a client to the services now hosted on site. You can find more information about the partners and events on the organization’s website (www.theville.ca).
How and MacFarlane began last spring with a vision for the centre and they have taken the first steps toward achieving their goals. It is early days for The ‘Ville but we’re expecting big things.