The City is improving North Park with the help of community feedback! The improvements will be focused near the existing tennis courts and may include a new playground, outdoor fitness equipment, a gathering area with seating, wayfinding signs, line painting for games on the parking pad, tennis court resurfacing, water bottle filler and new tree plantings.

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  • Fall 2023 to Spring 2024: Community engagement
  • Summer 2023 to Fall 2024: Design development
  • Winter 2024: Hire a construction team
  • Spring 2025: Construction starts
  • Fall 2025: Construction complete

The timeline is subject to change.

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Level of Engagement

This project has been classified as a Consult project based on the International Association of Public Participation Public Participation Spectrum. This means we obtain public feedback on existing analysis, alternatives, and/or proposals.

In 2021 and 2022, the project team worked with a community working group to discuss an overall vision for the park improvements.

A list of potential park improvements was developed in consultation with the community working group and jurisdictional authorities:

  • A new playground with engineered wood fibre surfacing
  • New fitness equipment
  • New community gathering area(s) and seating
  • New wayfinding signage at the Rustic entrance, at the new activity area and along the path
  • Re-pave existing tennis courts – new asphalt pavement, nets and line painting
  • Re-purpose the existing parking pad
  • Water bottle filling station
  • New tree plantings
  • Shade options
  • A bike rack
  • Regrading the existing driveway leading from main park path to the recreational area to facilitate a fully accessible access route

The full scope of improvements will be determined through the community engagement and design development process within the project budget, site constraints, and park operation requirements.

This phase of the community engagement process started in November 2023. Three design options for the new recreation area were presented to the community for feedback and revision.

Design Options

Design A

Design Option A for the North Park Improvements includes landscape design that features simple shapes and lines. There are seating areas spread throughout the design, with a variety of seating options including benches, picnic tables, and seat walls. The existing parking pad at the north side of the improvements area has been replaced with a full basketball court with additional hoops on the sides of court. South from the basketball court is a fitness pod and new playground area. There is a large metal shade structure in the playground area which could shade several picnic tables. South of the playground area is a new water bottle filler and the repaved existing tennis courts.

  1. Setback from slope (10m)
  2. New accessible path
  3. New full basketball court with additional hoops on the side of the court
  4. New playground
  5. New fitness pod
  6. New seating
  7. New bike rings
  8. New water bottle filler
  9. New metal shade structure
  10. Tennis court upgrades including new asphalt, nets and line painting.

New trees are throughout the design.

Design B

The image shows design option B for the North Park Improvements. The landscape design features non-uniform, organic shapes and lines. The existing parking pad at the north side of the improvements area has been replaced with a fitness pod and an open green for passive recreation. West of the open green is a new water bottle filler. Moving south through the open green there is a central seating area featuring metal patio sets with shade umbrellas. There are also smaller seating options spread throughout the design. South of the seating area is a new playground and the repaved existing tennis courts.

  1. Setback from slope (10m)
  2. New accessible path
  3. New fitness pod
  4. New open green space
  5. New playground
  6. New upright logs and large decorative boulders
  7. New seating
  8. New gathering area
  9. New bike rack
  10. New water bottle filler
  11. New patio seating with shade umbrellas
  12. Tennis court upgrades including new asphalt, nets and line painting.

New trees are throughout the design.

Design C

Design Option C for the North Park Improvements includes landscape design that features angular shapes and straight lines. The existing parking pad at the north side of the improvements area has been replaced with a half basketball court with integrated ball hockey goal. The court edges feature sculptural concrete elements that can be used as ‘informal’ skateboard or rollersport features. South of the court is a fitness pod and central seating area that includes a concrete ping-pong table and water bottle filler. There is also a variety of seating options including benches, picnic tables, and concrete seatwalls. South and west of the central seating area is a new playground with a sandbox. South of the playground are the repaved existing tennis courts.

  1. Setback from slope (10m)
  2. New accessible path
  3. New half basketball court
  4. New ball hockey goal
  5. New ‘informal’ skateboard/roller-sport features
  6. New fitness pod
  7. New playground
  8. New sandbox
  9. New concrete ping pong table
  10. New seating
  11. New gathering area
  12. New bike rings
  13. New water bottle filler
  14. Tennis court upgrades including new asphalt, nets and line painting

New trees are throughout the design.

Community Engagement Meetings and Events

December 2023

Online Survey

From November 27 to December 17, an online survey collected feedback on the three proposed designs for the new recreation area. 83 people completed the survey.

Key feedback follows.

Overall, 43 per cent of respondents were very satisfied, 41 per cent were somewhat satisfied, six per cent were neutral, four per cent were somewhat unsatisfied and six per cent were very unsatisfied with the improvements coming to the park.

A majority of respondents liked the following primary features in Design A:

  • Type of seating (68 per cent), metal shade structure (65 per cent), location of water bottle filler (62 per cent), distribution of seating areas (64 per cent), landscape design style (56 per cent), location of fitness area (53 per cent) and the full basketball court (53 per cent).
  • 60 per cent thought there was a good balance of recreational amenities for different activities and age groups.

A majority of respondents liked the following primary features in Design B:

  • Open green space (63 per cent), individual tables with umbrellas (60 per cent), location of water bottle filler (57 per cent), decorative boulders and upright logs (56 per cent), location of fitness area (54 per cent), distribution of seating areas (54 per cent) and landscape design style (53 per cent).
  • 49 per cent thought there was a good balance of recreational amenities for different activities and age groups.

A majority of respondents liked the following primary features in Design C:

  • The location of the water bottle filler (68 per cent), the ping pong table (65 per cent), multi-sport court (64 per cent), the landscape design style (62 per cent), the location of the fitness area (56 per cent), the distribution of seating areas (64 per cent) and the informal skateboard/rollersport features (56 per cent).
  • 47 per cent liked the sand box.
  • 75 per cent thought there was a good balance of recreational amenities for different activities and age groups.

Respondents were asked to compare key features among the design options and share their preferences:

  • Landscape design style: 40 per cent preferred the landscape design style of Design B (emphasizing organic shapes and lines), 26 per cent preferred Design A (emphasizing simple shapes and lines) and 22 per cent preferred Design C (emphasizing angular shapes and lines).
  • Fitness pod location: 47 per cent preferred the fitness pod location in Design A and C (central position in the new recreation area) and 34 per cent preferred Design B (north end).
  • Water bottle filler location: 39 per cent preferred the water bottle filler location in Design C (central), 25 per cent preferred Design B (west side) and 16 per cent preferred Design C (between playground and tennis court).
  • Additional recreational amenities: 43 per cent preferred the half basketball court with integrated ball hockey goal and informal skateboard/rollersport features in Design C, 24 per cent preferred the open green for passive recreation in Design B and 22 per cent preferred the full basketball court with additional hoops on sides of court in Design A.
  • Shade Options: 39 per cent preferred the individual metal patio tables with umbrellas in Design B, 37 per cent preferred the large metal shade structure that covers several picnic tables in Design A and 17 per cent preferred the shade provided by trees only in Design C.

The types of features that were ranked as the most important to respondents were:

  • Seating areas for relaxing, gathering and eating (97 per cent)
  • Open green space for passive recreation (90 per cent)
  • Playground (82 per cent)
  • Tennis court upgrades (81 per cent)
  • Fitness area (80 per cent)

39 per cent of respondents preferred standard fitness equipment, 32 per cent preferred equipment with obstacle features and 30 per cent preferred equipment with climbing features.

The most important playground features were:

  • Swings (84 per cent)
  • Slides (81 per cent)
  • Climbing structures (81 per cent)
  • Senior play structure for ages 5 to 12 (76 per cent)
  • Junior play structure for ages 2 to 5 (71 per cent)
  • See-saw with two seats (70 per cent)
  • The preferred playground equipment style was nature-inspired junior and senior play structures with earthy colour schemes (50 per cent), followed by junior and senior play structures featuring slides, activity panels, stairs, platforms and other climbing features (29 per cent) and circuit-type junior and senior play structures with hanging elements and net climbing elements (12 per cent).
  • 55 per cent of respondents preferred earthy colours and 31 per cent preferred bright colours.

Respondents also provided suggestions for additional amenities, if there was available space and budget to accommodate them, including:

  • pickleball courts
  • table games and bocce
  • a community bulletin board
  • public art
  • a walking track

Additional out-of-scope and out-of-budget suggestions were provided, including a dog park, splash pad or swimming pool, soccer fields, baseball diamonds and a skatepark.

Common themes to make the park inclusive and welcoming for all included ensuring it is safe, maintaining natural spaces, plantings and trees and adding activities for people of all ages, particularly older adults (e.g., pickleball).

In-Person Public Meeting

On December 5, approximately 36 community members attended a public meeting at Amesbury Community Recreation Centre to provide feedback on three design options for the recreation area.

Download the meeting presentation.

Key feedback follows:

  • Participants liked the landscape design style with angular shapes and straight lines, the multi-sport court (basketball half court with integrated ball hockey goal) and the ping pong table, in Design C.
  • Participants disliked the sand box in Design C.
  • Participants disliked the landscape design style with simple shapes and lines, and the full basketball court with additional hoops on the sides of the court, in Design A.
  • Participants liked the individual patio tables with umbrellas in Design B.
  • Participants preferred standard fitness equipment with obstacle features over equipment with climbing features.
  • The highest ranked playground features were swings, slides, spinner toys for two or more children and see-saws with four seats.

Participants shared the following suggestions:

  • Add plantings to encourage insect habitats.
  • Add features for older adults.
  • Add signage to discourage use of the park after dark.
  • Provide a design that would encourage native plants and species, open space for yoga and picnics.
  • Improve park maintenance of grass and garbage.

Participants shared the following concerns:

  • The condition of the creek and maintenance of park grounds (trees, planting areas, grass etc.).
  • The relocation of the existing playground.

November 2023

Community Working Group Meeting

On November 20, a working group meeting took place at Amesbury Community Centre where members of the project team presented three design options for the recreation area to a community working group created by the local Councillor’s office.

Key feedback follows.

There was mixed feedback about the preferred design option and features.

Participants provided the following suggestions:

  • Include designs and features that could be adapted to varying accessibility levels and activities, such as basketball hoops and tennis nets that could be raised and lowered.
  • Include some of the features displayed in Option C (e.g., basketball half-court, skate features and ping-pong table).
  • Place the water bottle filler in a central location in the recreation area.
  • Include more standard fitness equipment which is more accessible and less climbing or obstacle equipment.
  • Some participants were concerned about relocating the existing playground, the lack of shade and the maintenance of the grounds in the park.

In this phase of the community engagement process, the City will share the preferred design with the community for feedback. When the preferred design is confirmed, the project will move into the detail design phase, where the design team will finalize the design by working through the technical details and developing detailed plans and drawings for the construction contractor.

The anticipated community engagement activities in this phase include:

  • An online survey
  • A community working group meeting

The anticipated outcome of this phase is a refined preferred design.