City, School District work together on recreation amenities

Summary

The City of Nanaimo and Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools are partnering to enhance Nanaimo's recreation amenities. The City made an offer to purchase a 5.94 hectare (14.8 acres) parcel of land, subject to various terms which include: a public consultation process and approval by the Board of Education and Ministry of Education. The property, located at Nanaimo District Secondary School (NDSS), includes the Rotary Bowl and Serauxmen Stadium. The cost to acquire the property will total $4.1 million. The lands will be designated for parks and recreation purposes with the exception of a small parcel which has future development potential.

In addition, the City is working with the school district to build an artificial turf field at NDSS that can accommodate a regulation size Canadian Football field. The City and school district will split the estimated $2.4 million cost of constructing the field and the City will gain an interest in the land the field is on. The field is expected to be open for use in the fall.

Strategic Link: Supporting Council's priority of Recreation, Culture, Sports and Tourism by providing the necessary resources and space to facilitate the development of recreation, sport and culture in Nanaimo.

Key Points

  • The City of Nanaimo and Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools have been working together on projects of mutual benefit. One project is the long-term redevelopment of the NDSS site.
  • Funds for the property acquisition were taken from the City's Parks Development Cost Charge, Property Sales and Property Acquisition Reserves.
  • The City will contribute $1.2 million out of the Community Works Fund towards the construction of the artificial turf field. Staff will draw up an MOU to outline responsibilities pertaining to the development and use of the artificial turf field.
  • As per the Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ disposal of property procedures, the School District will complete a public consultation process before a decision is made by the Board of Education. This will include a public open house jointly held by the City and School District.

Quotes

"The value of this property and investment in the future use of this property is priceless. A generation of citizens have benefited from Rotary Bowl and Serauxmen Stadium. This purchase will guarantee another generation to enjoy the benefits of these two jewels in the sports corridor at the base of VIU. Plans to enhance and improve the sports fields will add the expanded use to more users. Compliments are in order to all those who contributed to the development of these properties and the School Board for reaching this agreement to the mutual benefit of all."

Councillor
City of Nanaimo

"This is a tremendous opportunity for the school district, the City of Nanaimo and most importantly our community,” said Steve Rae, Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ Board Chair. “Our students will continue to access a top-notch sports facility with the added benefit of a new artificial turf field as early as September. This partnership is one of many initiatives with the City, and the Board is looking forward to continuing our unique and progressive partnership for the betterment of the entire community. This partnership is one of many initiatives with the City, and the Board is looking forward to continuing our unique and progressive partnership for the betterment of the entire community and the future development of the NDSS site"

Board Chair
Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools
-30-

Contact:

Philip Cooper
Communication and Engagement Director
City of Nanaimo
250 755 4532
Dale Burgos
Director of Communications
Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools
250 741 5273

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