The July 30 celebration kicked off the opportunity for residents to voice how they would like to see the new field space used. A comment board was available at the event to give residents the opportunity to share their ideas. There is still an opportunity to share input using the City’s new engagement portal at haveyoursaypittmeadows.ca.
The input from the event and online feedback will be integrated into the Parks and Recreation Master Planning process beginning later this fall.
The City has negotiated with Onni Group Developments the land as an amenity contribution as part of the Golden Ears Business Park Phase 3 & 4. The land, located at the Pitt Meadows Athletic Park, includes 13 acres of field space including buffer areas, with an estimated value of $22.5 million.
Eight acres of the amenity contribution land will be owned by the City for recreation and park use. The remaining five acres, allocated for buffers and berms, is secured through a statutory right of way that gives the public exclusive use while owned/maintained by Onni. This means that Onni is responsible for the cost of installing and maintaining the buffers and berms. This land will enable the City to develop additional park, recreation and field space that will connect to existing sports fields.
A four metre pathway will be included within the buffers which will facilitate north, south, east and west connectivity, which will be used by walkers, joggers, and cyclists, and encourage active transportation.
As part of the GEBP 3 & 4, considerable road improvements will be made, including the expansion of Airport Way to four lanes and fully signalized intersections in several locations, including a signalized pedestrian crossing along Airport Way adjacent to the amenity.
Council has increased the allowable commercial use from five to 15 percent to encourage greater retail amenities for the community. Part of the 15 percent will also allow for daycare uses, which will support local working families.
The City has set aside $4.7 million through the collection of parks Developer Cost Charges (DCCs), separate from residential tax revenue that will contribute to the land development costs. The City is seeking feedback from the community to inform how the new field space will be used, which will inform the final development cost.
The space is currently envisioned as outdoor recreational space – sport fields, trails, and running track. However, the feedback we receive on the use of this space will be considered along with future input we receive during the Parks and Recreation Master Planning process, set to begin this fall. This process will help the City to plan and to resource future parks and recreation services/spaces and infrastructure the community wants and needs, including the desirability of a pool.
The land was valued at $40-45 per square foot of serviced land by an independent appraiser in May 2018. The total area is 13 acres; therefore, the total amenity contribution land value is estimated at $22.7m to $25.6m. Eight acres of the amenity contribution land will be owned by the City, and the remaining five acres includes buffers and berms as a statutory right of way.
The developer is required to fill the amenity land to grade with environmentally and structurally appropriate fill. The fill must be environmentally certified by an independent consultant of the City’s choice, at the developer’s cost. The developer must also adhere to all federal, provincial and municipal requirements.
Council has committed to developing a community interface working group to engage on construction impacts on neighbourhood livability. Consultation will occur during the development permit process.
The GEBP Phase 3 and 4 development project will:
• assure the economic base of the community through additional tax revenues, estimated to be $2 million per year (in addition to phases 1 and 2 revenues of $2 million,) resulting in a lower tax burden on residential homeowners in Pitt Meadows;
• mean that significant replacement and maintenance costs for sewer, water and road infrastructure for single family homes are borne by the developer instead of the City via property taxation;
• require the developer to pay to construct the buffers and berms, which the public will have access to. All maintenance costs for the buffers and berms will be borne by the developer;
• enhance business and employment opportunities, allowing for a variety of uses that will bring a range of services and job opportunities to our own community;
• lower demand on municipal services and resources including parks and recreation when compared to residential developments; and
• expand our parks and recreational space, providing an opportunity to re-envision the entire athletic park complex and to expand the user base for all of our residents of all ages and all abilities.
On July 30 the City hosted a celebration to recognize the completion of negotiations with Onni Development Corporation for the new park/field space. The event was well attended by the community and sports groups. This event provided an opportunity to solicit public feedback on how the community would like to see the new park/field space utilized. It was also a first step to inform a robust Parks and Recreation Master Planning process, set to begin in the fall of 2018.
The cost of the July 30 celebration was approximately $3,500, which included advertising, equipment rentals, refreshments, staff time, and supplies, and was managed by staff within the approved 2018 budget.