Agenda Index City of Vancouver


Date: October 21, 1997

Dept. File No.: FD

CC File No. 8017

TO: Standing Committee on Planning and Environment

FROM:Director of Community Planning, in consultation with

General Manager of Parks and Recreation

General Manager of Engineering Services

Director of Finance

Director of Legal Services

Manager of Housing Centre

SUBJECT: Implementation of First Phase Public Realm Improvements

in Oakridge/Langara - Improvements to Tisdall Park and Oak Park


THAT the Director of Finance be authorized to proceed with arrangements to fund the three projects and services described in (i) to (iii) below. The source of funding to be $20,000 in Development Cost Levies (DCLs) from the Oakridge/Langara DCL area, with $315,000 in the interim to be provided by Community Amenity Contributions (CACs) from the Oakridge/Langara planning area, and reimbursed by DCLs as they are collected, allocated as follows:

(i)THAT $180,000 including GST be allocated to implement improvements to Tisdall Park according to the plan shown as Appendix A.

(ii)THAT $15,000 including GST and disbursements be approved to retain a qualified landscape architectural firm to undertake design development and prepare contract documents for proposed improvements to Oak Park, in accordance with the Terms of Reference included as Appendix C.

(iii)THAT $140,000 including GST be allocated to construct upgrades to Oak Park.


The General Manager of Community Services RECOMMENDS approval of the foregoing.


Council has approved a series of policies relating to provision of public benefits and amenities in Oakridge/Langara. They include:

On July 18, 1995, Council approved the Greenway Plan, which includes three east-west corridors in this planning area, of which the most relevant is the North Arm Trail on 59th Avenue.

On July 27, 1995, Council adopted the Oakridge/Langara Policy Statement, which established the basic principle that private redevelopment will contribute to public benefits to this community.

On June 13, 1996, Council approved the Oakridge/Langara Public Benefits Strategy, which assessed and prioritized amenity requirements and how to provide them through development contributions and capital spending.

On June 13, 1996, Council approved the Oakridge/Langara Traffic Management Report, which identified traffic management and traffic calming issues and solutions as a result of new development.

On September 24, 1996, Council enacted DCL By-Law No. 7630 which established a DCL rate and boundary, and allocated 63% of DCL funds to park acquisition and development, 30% replacement housing and 7% for street (walking) improvements.


The approved Oakridge/Langara Public Benefits Strategy (PBS) recommends that upgrades for passive enjoyment of Tisdall and Oak Parks be completed within three years, even if in advance of redevelopment. Consistent with Council’s policy to advance neighbourhood improvements in the Oakridge/Langara area, this report seeks Council approval to proceed with improvements to these two existing community parks. The design of Tisdall Park located at 49th Avenue and Ash Street is in the contract document stage, where a contract can be tendered for construction in the near future. If Council approves the proposed design and funding approach, construction can proceed in 1998.

This report also seeks Council approval of funding for both design fees and construction for Oak Park, located at 59th Avenue and Oak Street. Planning and Engineering staff have worked closely with Park Board staff and the Marpole-Oakridge Community Centre Association to develop terms of reference for a park design consultant. If funding for consultant services and construction is approved, construction can also proceed in 1998.

To proceed within the three-year time frame envisioned in the PBS, these park improvements will need to be funded, in part, in advance of receipt of development contributions. The recommended approach uses Community Amenity Contributions (CACs) in an amount of $315,000 as an interim funding source to supplement $20,000 in Development Cost Levies (DCLs). In approving the PBS, Council authorized staff to use CACs as an interim funding source.

In total, staff are recommending $335,000 to implement these two park improvements in the Oakridge/Langara area. Of this, $180,000 is for the Tisdall Park upgrades (including $20,000 for design), $15,000 for the Oak Park design fees, and $140,000 for the Oak Park upgrades. A companion report will address design, funding and consultation for walking improvements.


This report seeks Council’s support for proceeding with the funding arrangements, design development and improvements for Oak and Tisdall Parks.

Figure 1. Location Map


The Public Benefits Strategy estimated revenues from DCLs over the life of the plan to be about $15,500,500. The DCL By-Law apportions funding as follows: 61% for park acquisition; 2% for park upgrade; 30% for replacement housing; and 7% for street (walking) improvements. Additional funds in the form of CACs will be targeted for provision of other projected long-term amenities and public benefits, including childcare facilities, non-market housing, and park acquisition and development.

The PBS also identifies two short-term public amenities to be undertaken within three years, of which the first is the subject of this report: (1) improvements to Tisdall and Oak Parks for passive enjoyment; and (2) walking improvements, generally taken to mean provision of a continuous sidewalk route in the area. A companion report addresses walking improvements.

The Oakridge/Langara PBS report also noted that:

"based on the current level of development activity, it appears that sufficient DCL funds may be available within two or three years to cover the $1,300,000 need for these projects. Staff recommend that the design phase for these projects begin as soon as staff resources are available."

The PBS noted that "if DCL funds are not available at construction stage, staff recommend other funding sources, such as CACs, be explored, to be repaid as DCLs become available." This report recommends this interim funding source as a way to fund the recommended improvements because sufficient DCLs have not yet been collected to date.

Funding for improvements to these two existing community parks in the amount of $300,000 was conceptually approved by Council at the time the Oakridge/Langara PBS was approved in June, 1996. Council directed staff to report back on details of design, consultation and funding. It should be noted that the recommended allocation exceeds this earlier estimate by $35,000, in order to provide design services for the two parks.


1.Tisdall Park

(a) Public Consultation

An Open House was held on September 25, 1996, to gather public feedback on a preliminary design concept for the park. Participants were asked their preferences for locations of potential walking paths, sitting areas, a child’s play area and enhanced landscaping. A mapping exercise and a questionnaire were used to gather public input, which was consolidated and incorporated into the consultant's terms of reference.

Of the approximately 50 people who attended the open house, most expressed a desire for more and improved walking and jogging paths through and around the park, placement of benches for scenic overlook and to watch sporting events, installation of picnic tables, and enhanced planting in the park.

People also responded positively to the idea of possible future creek daylighting of a nearby buried stream as a water feature in the park. The relocation and daylighting could only be undertaken as part of an area-wide sewer separation project, subject to funding beyond the scope of this project. The park plan has been designed to accommodate a future daylighted creek if and when this sewer separation project proceeds.

A newsletter was circulated to a mailing list of over 400 residents in December, 1996, summarizing the consultation and illustrating the resulting preliminary design concept.

(b) Design

The plan for Tisdall Park was produced by Durante/Kreuk Landscape Architects, under contract to the Park Board. The firm’s fees were paid out of a $20,000 advance on DCLs by the applicant for 620 West 45th Avenue. These fees are included in the cost included in Recommendation A1. The firm has worked closely with Planning, Engineering and Park Board staff to fulfil the terms of this contract.

The plan is consistent with both broad community aspirations derived through the Neighbourhood Portraits process and the more detailed input received in the following round of consultation described above. The plan included as Appendix A, includes the following features:

·530·defined park entrances, with identification signage and historical information;·530

·530·a continuous path around the park perimeter, for both walking and jogging;·530

·530·benches placed in a variety of scenic and convenient locations;·530

·530·enhanced landscaping near seating areas and park boundaries;·530

·530·a natural, long-grass meadow employing native plant materials and flowers in the area north of Dr. Annie B. Jamieson School; and·530

·530·natural play features in the same general area, including large basalt stones.·530

In addition to the above, a dozen significant trees were transplanted to Tisdall Park from the adjacent former Oakridge police station site at the developer's expense, including post-transplant care for the larger trees. (At the Park Board’s request, no design changes are being proposed to existing sports fields in this improvement plan.)

An accompanying report regarding walking improvements includes two City projects adjacent to Tisdall Park:

·530·a new sidewalk in the boulevard on the west side of Ash Street; and·530

·530·a modified sidewalk on the 49th Avenue side, in order to enhance the walking environment and incorporate street trees.·530

These will be funded separately by CACs and reimbursed by DCLs as they are collected.

(c) Costs

The cost of the proposed improvements to Tisdall Park are not to exceed $160,000, over and above the $20,000 design fee.

2. Oak Park

Oak Park has yet to have a consultant appointed to undertake design development of a similar level of improvements, since no design fees have been made available to date. However, public consultation has been achieved through both the 1995/1996 Neighbourhood Portraits process and continuing discussions between Park Board, City and Marpole-Oakridge Community Centre Association members, and recent community consultation as described further below. Hence, staff are requesting both design fees and capital costs at this time, rather than reporting back separately at a later date to request for capital funds for construction.

(a) Public Consultation

Staff have worked closely with Park Board staff, the Marpole-Oakridge Community Centre Association and Community Centre staff to develop consultant's Terms of Reference for plan improvements to Oak Park. A letter from the community centre association board supportingthis initiative is included as Appendix B.

A public Open House was held on April 3, 1997, at the Marpole-Oakridge Community Centre to inform and gain input from nearby residents. Approximately 60 people attended. A questionnaire and a map of the park were distributed for comment and ideas. A number of individuals also wrote or drew directly on a large site plan of the park. Most respondents favoured a continuous perimeter walking or jogging path, more trees and landscaping, and the placement of benches near child play areas and play fields.

(b) Design

The Terms of Reference for Oak Park improvements were prepared by Park Board in consultation with City staff to reflect community input, and are included as Appendix C. As with Tisdall Park, there are no changes planned for active sports fields. The concept includes:

·530·identified park entrances and perimeter walking paths;·530

·530·improved transitions between the community centre and active park space;·530

·530·enhanced landscaping and trees within passive park areas; and·530

·530·additional sitting and picnic areas within passive park locations. ·530

Two street and walking improvement projects are related to this park upgrade. Greenway treatment of the 59th Avenue frontage of the community centre is proposed to be completed in conjunction with the north side of 59th Avenue required as part of the redevelopment of the former Oakherst Private Hospital site. A City sidewalk is also to be provided on the west side of Fremlin Street. These projects are discussed in the companion report on walking improvements.

(c) Costs

The cost of the proposed Oak Park improvements is estimated to be $140,000, including GST and contingencies. The budget for design fees for a qualified landscape architect is estimated at $15,000 including GST and disbursements. It is possible that the successful fee proposal will be lower than this figure; if so, any savings should be reallocated to the construction budget. The City Charter allows DCLs to be used for engineering and design purposes.


During the planning process Council endorsed the notion of undertaking some public improvements early in the Oakridge/Langara area, in advance of development, specifically upgrading two major parks and improving walking conditions. Sufficient CACs have beenreceived to provide interim funding to supplement DCLs in order to complete the two proposed park improvements, and will be reimbursed by DCLs as they are collected. There is no impact on taxes.

Tables A and B summarize the funding sources and allocations described in this report and the companion report on walking improvements.

Table A. Summary of Funding Sources






R e z o n i n g s

5650 Oak St. (Vancouver Resources Centre)





7430 Oak St. (Oakherst)




620 W. 45th Ave. (Former Police Station)

$26,3003, 4



C i t y

C o s t

Streets Basic Unappropriated Account No. 13/32/9802/999 -Higher Zone Streets




Streets Basic Unappropriated Account No. 12/31/6906/999 - City Greenways








1 Letter of credit

2 $326,100 owing; payment expected by 1999

3 Includes $20,000 advanced to cover Tisdall Park design fees

4 Approximately $487,100 more expected at building permit stage, depending on final square footage of development

Table B. Summary of Fund Allocation







Heather / Tisdall /Willow Improvements




W. 45th Ave. Traffic Calming




W. 59th Ave. Greenway



$92,700 Streets Basic Unappropriated Account No. 13/32/9802/999 -Higher Zone Streets

$36,000 Streets Basic Unappropriated Account No. 12/31/6906/999 -City Greenways

Walking Improvements Total





Tisdall Park




Oak Park



Park Improvements Total3









1 Interim funding - the CACs will be replaced by DCLs as the latter are collected

2 Cash payment from 620 W. 45th Ave. (Former Police Station)

3 Park improvements are detailed in a companion report

4 $20,000 advanced by 620 W. 45th Ave. to cover Tisdall Park design fees

Staff note that using CACs as a source of interim funding until sufficient DCLs are collected is consistent with Council’s direction as reflected in the Oakridge/ Langara Public Benefits Strategy.


The outlined improvements to existing community parks results from and are supported by the Oakridge/Langara community.

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