Monday, January 20, 2014

Arena & Indoor Recreational Facilities

As you know, the provision of recreational and cultural services in Pelham has been an issue for decades.

Last year, I wrote about a creative problem solving session in December 2012 where Council identified a way forward:
• stay focused on deciding what to do with Town facilities and the Town-owned-lands in East Fonthill (32 acres at Regional Road 20 and Rice Road);
• define the recreational and cultural services the Town needs now and for the future;
• develop the Town-owned-lands in East Fonthill in the best manner and in conjunction with other property-owner groups;

As part of achieving this, staff prepared an Executive Summary of all the recreational and cultural reports that various Councils received over the years. Staff informed Council that, “A review of all previous studies was undertaken which confirmed that no significant or meaningful financial work was completed, [thus] requiring additional financial analysis for both an arena and community centre.”

The Town hired LeisurePlan International last summer to develop a market analysis and business case study. So that they could develop a statistically significant report, LeisurePlan surveyed +1,000 residents about their recreation and culture habits and preferences.

After detailed analysis, LeisurePlan presented the Phase One results to Council on January 13 and 20.

Please click here for a copy of LeisurePlan's presentation to Council.
Please click here for a link to the video recording of LeisurePlan's presentation during our January 13, 2014 meeting (from ~0:10:00 to 01:23:00).

Arena Facilities:
The report suggests that there is not enough demand in the short / medium term for a twin-pad, but suggests "there may be sufficient demand...for a second ice pad in the time period just beyond 2023/24."

LeisurePlan recommends that the Town:
• replace the existing single-pad with a new arena facility within the next five years;
• design a new twin-pad facility and phase the construction – build one ice pad first (contingent on capital financing) and construct the second pad after 2023/24 (should the sustaining demand develop);

Please click here for a copy of LeisurePlan's Arena Facility Strategy Provision report.

Multi-Purpose Recreational Facilities:
Upon surveying all user groups and associations (14 in total), all service providers in Pelham (46 in total), and 1,091 residents, LeisurePlan recommends that the Town:
• provide a multi-purpose facility to accommodate demand for participation in fitness activities, walking/running on an indoor track, and gymnasium sports;
• provide multi-purpose program space;
• not provide an indoor pool facility due to lack of demand and to associated costs;

Please click here for a copy of LeisurePlan's Indoor Multi-Purpose Facility Provision report.

Over the next 5-6 weeks, LeisurePlan will complete Phase Two – examine the business case and various options associated with facility construction and operation.

When both Phases are complete, Council and I look forward to working together with you and your neighbours to review the options and finally move ahead on the future recreational facilities and needs for the Town.