Seeking a new strategy for Meadowood Community Park

Costs for a plan with portables were double the budgeted amount

A plan for Meadowood’s community park is in a holding pattern.

Regional District of Nanaimo director Julian Fell, who represents the area, said the cost of the contract for the project turned out to be “spectacularly high.”

Therefore the board is now considering alternative options.

Fell said the cost was approaching $600,000, when the board originally was hoping to complete it for around $300,000.

“We’re not abandoning the project,” he confirmed. “We (the RDN board) just want to make sure we do our due-diligence and get the biggest bang for our buck.”

Approved by the RDN and School District 69 late last year, an agreement was signed allowing the RDN to manage school district lands on Meadowood Way as a community park and potentially create a community centre on the property.

At the time, RDN staff planned to use some of the school district’s portables suitable for a community centre.

Fell said those portables have since been moved into storage allowing the RDN board and staff more time to figure out what direction to take the project.

“We want to be sure this is the best way of achieving what we want,” said Fell, who committed to having a community centre in Meadowood by the end of this spring.

“The project hasn’t been scrapped,” RDN manager of recreation services Dean Banman confirmed Friday. “There’s still a commitment from the board to do a community centre in Meadowood… I’m looking at this as just a pause from the board to look at a few more strategies before committing to the use of those portables.”

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