PARKSVILLE — A plan with several desired big-ticket sports infrastructure projects in the Oceanside region is poised to be formalized shortly.
The District 69 Recreation Master Plan, essentially a wish list based on funding ability, includes expanding Ravensong Aquatic Centre, creating a wellness and fitness centre and building an artificial turf field, among other initiatives. The plan was approved at the committee level and is slated to be approved by the Regional District of Nanamo Board at the end of May.
Dean Banman, manager of recreation services for the RDN, said the District 69 Recreation Master Plan speaks to the needs of a wide range of users.
“We’re trying to foresee the future as far as population in not only 10 years, but 15 years and 20 years and planning for what eventually the community would like and could sustain or afford.”
The RDN reported nearly 1,700 resident surveys were done regarding the plan in 2016, which included 60 community group questionares and 30 discussion sessions.
Banman said since the plan involves many expensive pieces, project approvals down the line will be required for each of them from the District 69 Recreation Commission and RDN Board.
He said the extensive legwork RDN staff did on the plan will generate a strong case to help take advantage of grant opportunities.
“If you have in fact engaged the community, you’ve got a specific plan, you’ve got the resources in place and that gives a lot of good weighting to your grant opportunity. I think it’s a very valuable document,” Banman said.