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October 27, 2017 8:53 pm

City Releases Draft Parks Strategy

Wednesday, October 5, 2016 @ 11:57 AM

parksPrince George, B.C.- With TalkTober  neighbourhood conversations  set for this month,  the City of Prince George  has released its draft Park Strategy  for public comment.

The  draft report,  can be accessed  by clicking here.,






The 90  page  strategy  was developed   to  come up  with  a plan to  effectively address  the growing number of parks in the  City  and  the gaps in services.  According to the report,  “The quality of parks can be improved if the existing inventory is reduced, services are realigned or additional resources are added. ”

In comparison with Kamloops and Lethbridge,  Prince George has the  largest inventory of maintained parkland per 1,000 residents (10.6 hectares per 1,000)  and the lowest annual budget for park construction and upgrades at $8,614 per 1,000 residents.

As part of the  information gathering for this  strategy, 109 parks were assessed  as were neighbourhoods for their  park  access.

Residents indicated they would like  to see more “District Parks” such as the one at Duchess Park.   Here are  the recommendations for District Parks:

  • East District – Pursue a toddler playground and skate/bike park at Blackburn Park to meet community demands.
  • East Bowl District – Re-invest in Ron Brent Park with proceeds from the land sale and pursue enhancements to existing destination parks and schools in the East Bowl.
  • Hart/North Nechako District – Pursue improvements to Corporal Darren Fitzpatrick Bravery Park, repurpose Heather Road Park as a Dog Park and pursue the future acquisition of the Austin Road former school.
  • West District – Pursue the acquisition and development of a District Park at Kode Pit along with future District Parkland within University Heights.
  • West Bowl District – Pursue improvements at other destination parks, such as Exhibition Park and Rainbow Park, as well as at schools to alleviate the District Park deficiency.

The strategy also recommends the complete removal of   about 30 playgrounds  in the City as they are either under utilized,  or  the equipment is in need of replacement.  The particular  playgrounds in question represent surplus playgrounds in  heavy density  areas.

The report outlines that acquiring riverfront lands for the development of riverfront parks and trails   has been ranked as a medium to high priority.

Residents  have until  November 16th to  submit their   feedback on the strategy.  The final report will be presented to Council early in the new year.




The removal of 30 Playgrounds, why. These add to greenspace which helps make the city livable. Is there developers with the ear of city hall pushing for this? The city prides itself on being green well removing green space shows the city hall is all smoke and mirrors and money talks.

    Have you looked at some of these alleged green spaces?

Why would developers be behind this?

These are underutilized parks that mainly were in the right place at one time when there were young families with children living in the areas. The developers of those properties have left the scene long ago. Developers can only develop for the era they do business in. Once they leave, it is the City’s problem.

Those areas, such as where we live in the west bowl that were developed in the late 1970s, are now filled more with families of older people without children or even “children” who have returned to live at home or stayed home but do not use playgrounds anymore.

In addition, there are scattered houses which are occupied by groups of single younger people attending post-secondary schools and/or working.

There are significant houses that have more than four vehicles parked on driveways, lawns and on street parking.

The result is tons of vehicles on the streets and no kids in the playgrounds.

So the parks study proposes to deal with one sign of changing us of some of the older subdivisions. I doubt the City will look into the parking solutions which creates special problems for snow clearing.

    Well the city can sell park land to developers. Nothing stopping the city from doing that is there.

    Parking, that is an issue especially in areas with suites rented out causing parking problems.

    Might not see many kids in some parks so why is that an issue. It is still open space and I see people passing through these areas everyday while out for a walk. Open space is just not for kids.

    Once a park is gone, its gone for ever.

      First, tell the City what you are posting here that way it will be on the record.

      Second, I heave not read the report. There is a playground in a much larger park in our area. The equipment is dated, rusty, and can be dangerous unless replaced.

      In my opinion, if there are no children around here, then there is no one to use it. Remove the equipment, make it a seating area for more mature families, adults ,etc. if that will work. Try a couple.

      DO not put new playground equipment in that will not be used.

      Keep the green space. I have not read that they will sell the playgrounds. Typically they are small spaces which could become an additional Single Family lot if the neigbours will accept that. In some cases, the mini parks are actually a nuisance to the immediate neighbours.

      One could always put some of the tiny houses that are starting to pop up in the city in those spaces … ;-)

QUIT paying twenty five bucks hourly to seasonal workers who maintain the parks in summer… or is the City looking to make extra dollars by selling these Parks?? Regardless whether there are kids around or not, everyone uses these green spaces. You’ll notice, near every Park is a school close by.


    It’s always about putting another group of workers below the poverty line with you right wingers, isn’t it?

404 error on the link, city is offline?

What determines underutilized? 10, 15, 20 visits per day/week/month? 20 kids, 30 kids, 40 kids per day/week/month? Can’t open the link so cannot tell if there is any info on what makes a park underutilized. Lots of rain this summer so was that considered or factored in?

Looks like they want to buy property to make “superparks” so they can sell off the smaller community parks? Definitely smells, where is this money coming from?

They demand developers add parks to their subdivisions, for what purpose? To sell these areas at a later date for city profit? They need more seniors housing space? I read that the golf course deal fell through because the developer needed to make the parkspace smaller but the city refused. If I was that developer and this report came out within my 3 years to sue for damages I would be on it for sure if that was in fact the deal breaker

Flip flop seems to be the theme of this city hall, hey do we need a OCP amendment while we are at it?

    Link has been repaired. You should be able to access the full 90 page report now.

    The playground in our area is visible from our lot which borders a large park. The playground is about 800 feet away. I see kids using the park for their ATVs. I might see one kid on the swings a month. I see more adults than that using the swings.

    We moved in here almost 40 years ago. the playground used to be used every evening in the summer. So was the park for golfing with the plastic practice balls, some throwing of footballs, kicking of soccer balls, snowgolf practice in the winter when that was the vogue.

    We used to go cross country skiing as well as some snowshoeing out our backyard, into the park, along the wide boulevard and into the large nature park in the area.

    The park needs to stay. It is part of a walkway system that connects most of the subdivision through walkways via two larger parks to the elementary and high school in the area. That is the way they used to design subdivisions in those days but no longer do.

    Oops … wait a minute …. we no longer have a planning department … I keep forgetting …. ;-)

If you look at page 8 of the report when compared to Kamloops and Lethbridge PG has the lowest annual budget per capita yet has the largest inventory of parkland and the lowest operational cost.

Kamloops has the highest operational costs with the smallest amount of parkland. To me this could mean that they are doing a better job of keeping their existing parks up to an acceptable standard while PG applies their standard process when it comes to maintenance…..build it and then forget it. The tennis courts are a prime example, let most of them get into such a terrible state that it would be outright dangerous to play a game.

In appendix d shows are many tot lots and playgrounds that are rated in fair to poor condition yet are at or near the bottom in terms of upgrading. It is unacceptable to have kids playgrounds in bad shape, far better to have fewer playgrounds that are properly maintained. The parks left without play structures can still be greenspace used by neighbourhood kids for kicking a soccer ball or playing lacrosse or baseball etc.

The purchase of more land should be put on hold until the city gets a handle on existing inventory of parks. The cost for Austin road school or the Kode pit will be substantial meaning either a boost in taxes or less upkeep of the parks we already have.

The city works yard was supposed to be part of the “A River Runs Through It” parkland development and last time I drove past there was not a blade of grass to be seen. They spent millions moving to old YRB shop on Ospika and the park plan seems to have withered and died.

BTW Got a good laugh when I saw that Rainbow Park has a high priority plan to get a parking lot built because existing parking was lost due to bike lanes on Ospika. What was that Joni Mitchell song ….pave paradise to put up a parking lot:)

    Actually I noticed that the bike lane adjacent to the park on Ospika is not a bike lane. As you approach the park they have written that the bike lane ends and they have one of those symbols which is supposed to mean that the roadway is to be joint use for cars and bikes. Sort of reiterating what the Motor Vehicle Act/Regulations state.

      I seem to remember that they did not put the bike lanes along Rainbow park because they rent out the park for wedding photos etc and wanted to leave some parking in place for the time being. If you look in appendix e there is a High Priority item to add parking lot to Rainbow because of bike lanes.

      Add another 300k or so to the bike lane tab:( Doubt the province will kick in half.

    Oh, I forgot to mention that there is a school parking lot off the Rainbow entrance to the park. So if there is a large event, some people could park there.

    Let the bride and groom go skipping down the slope towards the water feature and bridge.

I note there is no mention of Nechako Riverside Park, located on the north side of Foothills Bridge. An extremely popular park but no mention of off street parking which folks have been talking about due the the people parking close to the edge of the 4 lane boulevard and pedestrians crossing a busy street. Guess I’m going to have to write another letter to the City and get my input in there. Just seems strange that it’s very popular yet no improvements whatsoever.

I am good with the whole report, and the way parks are maintained and operated. However I would suggest, in the future, Mayor and Council stay away from renaming parks and changing the direction of traffic in those parks… would not want the conservatives in this town getting conniption fits and having heart attacks.

    I thought you told me that you were checking the ER intakes for the 2 weeks following the announcement of the Fort George being removed from the park name and some unpronounceable name being added to confirm you heart attack hypothesis. ;-)

    At least most of the other First Nations names to the east of us are pronounceable.

    Ask Marcel Gagnon and he will tell you how Lheidli T’enneh should be pronounced. Most Canadians have major problems with it. It starts with a soft guttural sound much closer to some European languages.

      Hope that the new name for the province idea that is being floated will be easier to pronounce and spell than the park name…..Saskatchewan is hard enough ;)

I wonder why they’re looking at acquiring the old Austin Road school?

It doesn’t surprise me one bit. Mayor Hall was able to justify closing 23 schools in this district, so why not 30 kids parks.

I remember in the eighties how they cut down all the city street front ornamental trees in subdivisions like Foothills and places west of the bi-pass because it was said the maintenance cost was too high. We already have the lowest parks budget for a city our size already, so naturally cut costs further by cutting more parks. It’s how this city operates. Must be another tax cut for major industrial in the works.

Quality of life investments have never been a strong point with PG city management.

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