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October 27, 2017 3:53 pm

City Eyes Site for 4 Seasons Pool Project

Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

rince George, B.C. –  The  proposed replacement of the Four Seasons Pool  and  Fire Hall #1  are both front and centre on the agenda  for Prince George City Council this evening.

Staff have prepared a report  suggesting  a 7th Avenue location for  a new  Four Seasons Pool,  should  the  referendum set for this fall  be approved.

The site  is the 7th Avenue block bordered by Dominion on the  east, and Quebec on the west. Currently, the site is home to the Days Inn  and a  parking lot.

The proposed construction cost  of  a new pool  is $35 million dollars,  but that does not include the  cost of purchasing the  site,   demolition of  existing structures and  preparation of the site for  construction.

Council  will also be asked to approve first three readings of the bylaws  to borrow the money for the construction  of a new pool ($35 million) and  fire hall ($15 million)  in preparation for the  referendum this fall.    The actual questions that will  appear on the referendum  will also be presented for  Council’s approval.


The cost to taxpayers for the pool and fire hall would be $35 million and $15 million which would be borrowed over a period of probably 20 years. So in fact the cost including interest would be in excess of $90 million dollars. We can then add the cost of purchasing the site for the swimming pool, and demolition, etc. The next question is. Does the cost for the new fire hall include the cost of demolition, and where will it be located, and will we need to purchase land for this facility.

We also need to know what will happen to the land that the pool and fire hall presently sit on. Will this land be sold to off set some of the costs of the new facilities, or will it be used for some other City structures.

In order to make a learned decision on whether or not to support these projects in a referendum, we need all of this information.

Without it we need to vote NO.

    They’re proposing City owned land beside the YMCA on Massey for the firehall. I want to see the costs to purchase the Days Inn land and demolish the building too. Then I assume they need to demolish the old pool as well?

      Good to see that they will use City owned land for the new fire hall.

      I don’t necessarily agree that the response time would be reduced by 50% mainly because while the new location is closer to some areas it is now farther away from others such as the industry, business, and houses located North of the 7th ave location.

      The idea that they would sell the pool or fire hall land to offset the cost of these projects should be taken with a grain of salt.

      They were supposed to sell off the old police station to offset the cost of the new one, and I haven’t seen that happen yet. They were also supposed to sell off the City property on the East end of 4th Avenue to off set relocating their yards, and purchasing, etc; to 18th an Ospika. I have not seen any movement on that sale either.

Let’s start the demolition.

Aside from the question if a replacement pool is warranted, I wonder if a downtown location is the best choice? Seems to me from a land use perspective, the proposed site would be better suited for office space, commercial space, residential appartments or another hotel. A new pool if needed, should probably go either in the Hart, College Heights or over by the Y? I know the existing pool is close but that doesn’t mean it was in the right location either.

From the looks of it, also this will be a bigger pool, but a smaller parking lot?
I’m in agreement with a new firehall, and the location makes sense to me, but I don’t like paying for “wants” vs “needs”. My pension cheque doesn’t allow for that, thank you!

So much more information is needed about the Days Inn site. The site was for sale, supposed to become a Holiday Inn, sale fell through, Days Inn moved back in and completed renos. I can’t fathom that that City would get this site for any sort of discount…unless there are backroom deals….which there normally are.

No to the pool, no to the new firehall.

Yes to new pool & yes to new firehall. Both pools are very busy so I say yes we do need the new one downtown. It is used lots by tourists as well as the people living in the area.

Purchase the newly renovated Day’s Hotel, tear down and build a new pool all within the framework of 35 million, seriously? As mentioned above; bigger pool and smaller parking lot? Why does the Planning Department use a postage stamp for their plans? Do we have a land shortage in Prince George? Should go at the end of Domano Blvd., College Heights and perhaps incorporate a new exhibition ground and golf coarse.

Why would the City have to buy Days Inn when it is the largest property owner in the city?

The city already owns the block across the street from the proposed site, from memory the only thing left standing is the bible store in a building the city already owns. So remind me again why the city must buy and tear down an existing business and further degrade the CBD tax base that help fill the coffers.

To make matters worse the owners will either take the money and run or build something else and have an extended tax holiday courtesy of Mr. & Mrs John Q Public.

What other options have they explored?

Building fire hall first and locating pool where fire hall stood with parking moved to old pool lot?

New pool in old pool location- managed to make it through with less ice when Kin center was rebuilt why not the same thing for pool? Could construction time line be compressed to allow this to become a viable option?

City hall seems hell bent on closing the Connaught Motor Inn and that is just a stones throw away from proposed site why not there? If they are going to demolish a hotel why not one on it’s last legs rather than one that has had a few bucks invested recently although would have to get a 3rd party to buy it as the current owners would jack the price through the roof if he knew the city wanted it:)

Might be immensely cheaper just to expand the Aquatic Center. It is afterall centrally located. But having said that, growth seems to be mainly heading west so maybe the replacement pool should be located out that way. If built out west overall cost should be much cheaper, no added demolition costs and I would think property would be cheaper.

    Interesting proposal.

    I was actually wondering what it would cost to build a smaller “community” type pool in the Hart and then a similar pool in the west end, maybe out towards Westgate or something like that. Heck, throw in a splash pad for the kids, a playground area and maybe a blacktop area that could have basketball nets in the summer and double up as an outdoor ice rink in the winter. Or at least build plan for that type of development so that it could be expanded when the demand or population base warrants it. Make it a community recreational centre and offer a number of different options out of the one location.

    With the Aquatic Centre being no more than about 5KM from any location in the bowl, it’s pretty tough to make a case that the downtown couldn’t be serviced with it. If you had smaller, more compact pools at the other ends of town, that should also free up some capacity at the Aquatic Centre.

    You’d obviously have to do some costing and see if it’s feasible, but I’m not sure if it makes much sense to build another downtown pool and using up prime commercial space, especially when there really isn’t any significant push to get more people living downtown.

    If the city actually did make an aggressive pitch to get more people living downtown, then I could see it. As it stands though, that’s a pipe dream. Pools are used by people. Put them where the people are or are expected to be. In PG, that’s the suburbs.

    Just an idea.

Everyone commenting that the pool should be on the Hart or in College Heights. I have to disagree. Our students have swim lessons at four seasons every year. The year before last our staff wasn’t on the ball we ended up having to go the the aquatic centre and the busing costs doubled for us. As a rural school we don’t have enough money as it is and we lost a lot of extra programming for our kids because of it. As someone who lives east of town. I don’t agree and I am betting everyone else in the bowl and east or south of town will agree. That being said it would be silly to purchase more property downtown for it. Old fire hall location, or the actual site of the current pool. Although the poster that commented the Connaught Hotel would be choice as well.

The City seems extremely confident that the referendum will pass. Does “staff” have nothing else to do?

Maybe I have my tinfoil wrapped a little too tight today but I think I see something here.

That place where the old 4 seasons pool is now would be a perfect site for those who want to build a PAC. We know that issue is going to be around a long time and now the city can say we have the vacant land in a wonderful place to build it with plenty of parking right across the street at the old fire hall site.

My tinfoil says, remove and rebuild the pool on the same land it sits on right now.

    I agree. It’s so obvious, but they are dangling a new pool and everyone wants a new pool….probably add $15million to buy Days Inn, and another $5 million for the demolition of Days Inn (using the PG Hotel as a yard stick), another $5million for the demolition of Four Seasons, add in another $70 million for the eventual PAC for its ‘perfect’ location… and just $35 million for the pool and we are in it at the end of the day for $130 million easy… and then there is the fire hall still young think about.

    All of it debt… $130-Million.

    Probably better not to get on the PAC bureaucratic steam roller and instead build a pool on vacant land. I would think Pine Center is the obvious central location… part of ensuring the mall stays viable after Sears goes bankrupt moving to a more service and tourism model of business. Either that or two smaller pools like the new Vanderhoof one currently being built for $5-milllion… located in the Hart and College Heights debt free.

City sure likes to locate all major public buildings on the 100-year food plain. If one really looks at downtown real estate… the new hotel next to the library is the only major investment east of Quebec Street.

The reason no private money makes major investments east of Quebec street is that the 100-year flood plain is 8-feet above street level. This is why the library is raised, the pool is built on a mound… the only other major buildings are city hall (raised ground), Plaza 400 building (govt owned, Ramada tenant), court house, wood innovation building, civic center… all government owned buildings in the 100-tear flood zone to try and intice private investments that can’t get proper flood insurance in that area and have little opportunity for underground parking with the water table just below the surface.

Ditto for the emergency response fire hall next to the YMCA… we need a city planner because that use to be the Nechako river only 200 years ago. It’s below the 100-year flood plain… can’t they find higher ground to sink PG’S hard earned tax dollars into?

Why not outsource the pool to the Y?

Why not put a new pool on the city land by the ymca, they already own the land plus close to PGSS (they might start up a swim team maybe or use it for phys ed). Then they could move the fire hall to the old pool site and use the old fire hall for city hall parking and then there would be more parking for the coliseum as well. With the new pool they should look at what grand praire has. There pool is amazing and if we had something like that Im sure there would be more people using it as well and that means more revenue

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