A new community sports park in Hope is one step closer to becoming a reality now that Tri-West Contracting has been awarded the construction contract.
The local company worked with numerous stakeholder groups in the community to develop the plan for the project, but has partnered with Hope Pathway Partners, Hope Motorsports Group and Hope Mountain Centre to carry out the work.
“It’s a community-driven project and community-driven projects have the best legacy in small towns,” said Stephanie Hooker, with Hope Pathway Partners. “We’re getting some really fantastic (assets) in our community that will really improve the lifestyle here and access to recreation infrastructure for our community.”
The park has been in the works for two years, but hit a roadblock last July when stakeholders raised concerns about the design, project priorities, the ability for locals to bid on the job, and a perceived lack of communication. District staff worked with the groups to determine a new scope of the project before a request for proposals was issued in October. Tri-West Contracting was the only company to submit a bid.
The overall project cost is $463,219, of which 80 per cent is being covered by a provincial grant awarded in 2012. The construction budget alone is $400,000, with the remaining amount being spent on consultant fees and expenditures such as public information meetings. The district has also allocated $17,000 to a contingency fund, which will used for future value-added components of the community sports park project.
“The grant that we received from the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development was created to make communities healthier and more active places to live in. I feel that the proposed project submitted by Tri-West Contracting, in cooperation with various community stakeholders, has met or surpassed the expectations of the province,” said Scott Misumi, the district’s director of community development. “The contractor and their team of community stakeholders did a wonderful job of combining their efforts. The original estimate for the works was set at over $3 million. Through public consultation, the scope of work was pared down to a certain degree but the majority of the project components will be completed within the contract price of $400,000. The substantial cost savings can be attributed to committed volunteer workers and a contractor who wants to contribute to our community.”
The project will see upgrades to the Sports Bowl seating area, new signage, skatepark repairs, and improvements to the picnic area and trails. The main trail in particular will be widened so that it is stroller and wheelchair accessible. Hoots Inc. has also been hired to build a new bike skills park for beginner and intermediate riders directly across from Coquihalla Campground, which will be similar to the Island 22 bike skills park in Chilliwack.
“A big chunk of the budget is going to the bike skills park and we’re hiring world-renowned professionals to design it,” said Hooker. “This mountain bike skills park is an amenity for local kids but it’s also an attraction for visitors to our community. We’re not going to flatten that forested area, but we’re going to take out all the dangerous trees. The idea is to get kids into nature and get kids active.”
The project is likely to get underway sometime in March and work is slated to be completed by the end of the year. Construction is being scheduled to have the least amount of impact on community events.