(PQB News file photo)

Parksville city council announces aquatic and recreation centre project

Despard Avenue shown as test site for facility

  • Feb. 2, 2021 12:00 a.m.

A proposed recreation centre and sportsplex in Parksville is one step closer to reality.

Parksville city council moved on Monday, Feb. 1 to release the ‘Parksville Pool and Multiplex Facility Feasibility Study’ to the public along with background information, staff reports, studies, assessments and stakeholder engagement session results, now available on the city’s public engagement platform, Let’s Talk Parksville. The first step in a complex multi-year process, the report summarizes the feasibility and benefit of a multi-use aquatic centre in Parksville and shows Despard Avenue as the test site for the facility.

According to a city release, in 2019, council directed staff to engage the services of HDR Architecture Associates to undertake the pool and multiplex feasibility study. Work began in January 2020 with the feasibility report finalized in December 2020. A series of workshops and stakeholder sessions were hosted by HDR in March 2020 and due to the pandemic, planned interactive public consultation events were postponed to the next phase of the project.

“Council is pleased to announce this exciting project for multi-use and recreation facilities for our community,” said Mayor Ed Mayne. “This is Parksville’s largest project to date and will provide amenities, programs, services, and a social gathering space for seniors and young families for years to come. During the next phase of the Parksville Aquatic and Recreation Centre project, we will engage the community in a series of robust public engagement opportunities.”

READ MORE: Parksville wants consultant to examine feasibility of rec centre

As soon as it is safe to do so, extensive and varied in-person community engagement will be facilitated. In the meantime, the city looks to online engagement opportunities and encourages residents to share comments, ideas, ask questions and sign up for project updates through Let’s Talk Parksville. Comments to city council on this project may also be emailed to letstalk@parksville.ca.

During phase 2, the detailed design phase, the community will be asked to provide substantial input to fine-tune and define the concept presented in the feasibility study. In this phase, the city will engage a consultant to facilitate community involvement and provide final detailed design and cost estimates for construction of the project and its operations. When detailed design, cost estimates and potential grant funding elements are determined and prior to construction, electors will be asked through a referendum for approval to borrow.

At the council meeting on July 3, 2019, council passed a motion for city staff to undertake a business case, including the prepartation of a request for proposal for a reasibility study, with a budget up to $75,000, to provide options for capital investment in a new facility including a pool, recreation centre and sportsplex for council consideration during the 2020 provisional budget process.

— NEWS Staff, submitted

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