New Highlands Community Centre – Update to the Community

Highlands Community League ~ New Community Centre Project Proposal

Presented by Susan Petrina
Chair, Highlands Facilities Renewal Committee

HCL AGM — UPDATE TO THE COMMUNITY   JUNE 2017

WHO
The Highlands Facilities Renewal Committee (HFRC) was formed in Nov. 2013 by the Highlands Community League (HCL) Board of Directors to investigate, make recommendations and provide oversight for the renovation/ rebuilding and enhancements of its facilities. A previous revitalization effort in 2003 resulted in a decision to demolish the original Highlands hall in 2007.

WHAT
Reevaluate and redevelop the existing site and build a new modern, sustainable, energy-efficient and multi-functional gathering place where residents participate in community programs, attend public meetings and celebrations and hold private functions.

WHEN
The goal is to have the new Highlands Community Centre completed in time for the 100th anniversary of the Highlands Community League in 2021.

WHERE
HCL parkland located north of Highlands Park between 61st & 62nd Streets at 113 Avenue, and south of Highlands Junior High School.

WHY
Since the demolition of the original hall, Highlands’ residents have made do with the former clubhouse of the Highlands Lawn Bowling Club, an old and inadequate two-storey building of limited use. This committee and project proposal follows on the efforts of previous community volunteers to replace the original hall and aging structure that remains. An initial community survey in 2014 revealed support for a new and revitalized facility.
The HCL board reaffirmed its support for the initiative following a strategic planning exercise undertaken in 2016.

Goals & Outcomes: Design and create an inviting new facility that’s easily accessible for those with mobility challenges, provide space for a variety of programming and meetings for adults, children and local clubs, host community events and generate reliable rental income. The project scope will also include the development of
a master site plan to better utilize the grounds to promote outdoor pursuits such as gardening and recreational activities.

HOW
HFRC members interviewed representatives from several other community leagues to evaluate how they met the challenges of building or renovating their facilities. The committee is exploring all grant possibilities from federal, provincial and municipal governments, as well as fundraising opportunities beyond casino dollars. Making this multi-million dollar project a reality will depend on strong, ongoing community support and necessitates exploring multiple funding streams, including the establishment of an Endowment Fund, corporate and private sponsorship and donation opportunities.

Early project estimate: $2.5-to-$4 million

Next Steps
– A public posting to solicit Requests For Expressions of Interest (RFEI) was completed May 2017 and
submissions are currently being evaluated.
– An invitation to submit Request For Proposal (RFP) will be extended to short-listed firms.
– Select and retain an architectural firm and necessary external supports (eg project manager), then commence
public engagement sessions to refine facility and site concept plans.


HOW CAN YOU HELP or GET INVOLVED?

Join the HFRC and serve on a sub-committee, attend Highlands Community League’s AGM on June 6,
and stay tuned for other opportunities to participate in community engagement sessions!

 For more information, contact Susan Petrina – susanwpetrina@gmail.com

 

Posted in Hall Renewal.