RDN and consulting representatives meet with stakeholders and recreational facilities users during an open house for the Draft District 69 Recreational Services Master Plan at Oceanside Place in Parksville Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017. — J.R. Rardon photo

RDN and consulting representatives meet with stakeholders and recreational facilities users during an open house for the Draft District 69 Recreational Services Master Plan at Oceanside Place in Parksville Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017. — J.R. Rardon photo

Public weighs in at RDN rec open house

Ravensong pool expansion among draft master plan recommendations

The Regional District of Nanaimo unveiled its draft master plan for District 69 (Parksville Qualicum Beach) recreational services, and residents responded in a series of public information sessions held throughout the region this week.

Dozens of visitors met face-to-face with RDN staff and master plan consultants, filled out feedback forms and strolled through a series of panels outlining the district’s recreational objectives and recommendations at Parksville’s Oceanside Place Wednesday, Nov. 22.

“People have been asking some good questions, some challenging questions — and that’s only right,” said Dean Banman, manager of recreation services for the RDN. “The general view is, ‘This is good; now do it.’”

Wednesday’s meeting in Parksville followed sessions earlier in the week in Nanoose Bay, Coombs and Qualicum Beach. The final open house was held Thursday, Nov. 23, in Qualicum Bay.

Attendees who spoke with RDN staff at Oceanside Place included residents representing both adult and youth hockey associations, youth soccer, swimming and synchronized swimming, and Parksville Curling Club executives.

The recreation services master plan process began in September of 2016, and in March of 27 the consultants, RC Strategies + PERC, released a community questionaire and began a series of discussions with community groups and stakeholders. The resident survey drew 1,687 responses, another 60 community group questionaires were filed, and 29 interviews and discussions were held with stakeholders.

Those responses all factored into creation of the draft plan, and this week’s open house sessions provided one more chance for the public to weigh in before the plan is finalized and presented to the RDN in March of 2018, said Brian Johnson of RC Strategies.

“We’re here trying to get as much information as we can on the draft master plan,” said Johnson. “And people can continue to make suggestions online until Dec. 14.”

The 80-page draft master plan includes 34 recommendations on short-, medium- and long-term recreational strategies and infrastructure, including two conceptual designs of an expanded Ravensong Aquatic Centre in Qualicum Beach.

Other infrastructure projects on the community’s “wish list” include a turf sport field — possibly with a track — a fitness and wellness centre, and community program space.

The draft recommendation on sport fields is for the RDN and its partners, including the City of Parksville, the Town of Qualicum Beach and School District 69 to “make better use of underutilized fields” and to monitor the utilization of the fields for three to five years. If warranted, the RDN could then consider retrofitting an existing grass field to artificial turf.

Its recommendation on a fitness centre is for the RDN to identify opportunities to integrate a centre into an existing facility, for example, the proposed Ravensong Aquatic Centre expansion. A larger-scale, stand-alone fitness and wellness facility would be revisited in 10 years as part of a new, multi-purpose facility.

Recommendations on community program space are to continue to place a priority on utilizing existing facilities and spaces, and to revisit the need for a new facility in five years.

To view the Draft District 69 Recreational Services Master Plan online, visit www.getinvolved.rdn.ca/recmasterplan. The page includes a feedback submission form to ask questions or make suggestions. Feedback must be submitted by Dec. 14.

For story tips: editor@pqbnews.com

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

The remains of the Mid-Island Co-op in Whiskey Creek along the Alberni Highway on Friday, June 18, after a blaze the day before devastated the gas station. (Michael Briones photo)
VIDEO: Whiskey Creek gas station burned to the ground after camper van explosion

Nine fire departments responded to the incident, no injuries reported

John Furlong told the Vancouver Board of Trade on Feb. 20, 2020 that he thinks the city could and should bid for the 2030 Winter Games. (CP photo)
The Co-op gas station at Whiskey Creek is burning after a camper van burst into flames just before 4 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (FACEBOOK PHOTO)
Exploding camper van torches Highway 4 gas station between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni

Highway traffic blocked after Whiskey Creek gas station erupts into flames

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Karl and Stephanie Ann Johanson were thrilled to spot a pair of Sandhill Cranes in the Panama Flats this month, an unusual appearance for such birds. (Photo by Stephanie Ann Johanson)
WATCH: Sandhill cranes an unusual, joyful sight in South Island parkland

These birds don’t often touch down on their way between northern B.C. and Mexico

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

(V.I. Trail/Google Maps)
Now 90% complete, Vancouver Island trail forges new funding parnership

Victoria Foundation takes on Vancouver Island Trail Association; fund valued at $40,000

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Freighters have becomd abundant in the Trincomali Channel on the east side of Thetis Island.
Nanaimo ponders taking on waste from nearby anchored freighters

Vancouver-based Tymac petitioning the Regional District of Nanaimo to accept waste at its landfill

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Most Read