South End Community Centre Needs Assessment and Feasibltiy Study Update

A start-up meeting with Sierra Planning and Management (Sierra) and the staff steering committee took place on November 21, 2013.

The Community Working Group (CWG) had an initial meeting on January 10th to discuss the project, a work plan, a Terms of Reference for the committee, and confirm stakeholders.
• The CWG is comprised of representatives from the following: City, WCDSB, UGDSB, GWSA, Guelph Youth Sports Advisory Group, University of Guelph, St. Joseph’s Health Centre and the YMCA.

The goal of this project is five-fold:

1. Identify the existing recreation needs and demands of Guelph residents with a focus on the South End
2. Examine the existing supply of recreation facilities and programming in the City of Guelph
3. Identify any existing and projected gaps in the supply of recreation facilities and programming in Guelph
4. Identify methods to address this gap through repurposing/renovating existing recreation facilities
5. Develop a concept and operating model for a potential new recreation facility in Guelph’s South End

The following tasks have commenced and are ongoing:

• Review and Summarize Existing Inventories, Studies, Plans and Policies
• Preparation of a Demographic Profile
• Locational Analysis
• Recreation Asset Inventory and Use Summary
• Assessment of Facility Utilization

Sierra has developed a detailed community engagement plan for review by the CWG, and terms of reference for the CWG. They have also provided content to the City’s Communications group to develop a webpage for the project. http://guelph.ca/living/recreation/facilities/south-end-recreation-centre/. As the project moves forward, additional material will be provided.

Sierra will be meeting with the CWG and Recreation User Groups on February 10th and 12th, for targeted discussions of the groups’ perceptions of existing and future demand and need for, and supply, distribution, and quality of recreation facilities in Guelph.

Plans for broader public consultations are in the works, with a tentative timeline of late March/early April. Plans for communicating the projects are underway, including confirmation of deadlines to advertise the meetings.

Concurrent with the South End work is the preliminary work for the retrofit of the Victoria Road Recreation Centre (VRRC), and for clarity’s sake, the scope of the South End study will help to inform what additional programing should be added to VRRC, if anything, beyond the necessary facility renovations to address accessibility issues, facility security and energy efficiency; essentially renewing the life expectancy of the 40yr. old facility. The VRRC work commenced January 17th, and our consultants for both projects are working jointly with staff such that the community engagement aspects of the projects are well-coordinated.

I am pleased to report the South End project is on-track and the plan is to provide a final report to Council in June 2014, including the findings and recommendations of this Needs Assessment, Feasibility Study and Implementation Strategy.  Staff

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