I have been receiving feedback this week with regards to the park design for Potters Key development. Some residents are asking if a splash pad could be considered and if there will be a soccer field as shown in the developers design. City did look at trying to construct a soccer field within the North Park (Joe Lewis Park) design layout, and looked at the ability to retain trees within the park block. The subdivision engineering has allowed the City to retain a substantial amount of the trees within the park block, which is something that most new park projects do not have. Much of the park block would need to be cleared if we were to proceed with a mini-soccer field option. The above photo shows the extent of clearing that would be needed to accommodate a soccer field. As you can see, essentially all the trees will need to be removed from the park block. Bedrock is close to the surface within the park block so the park block would need significant blasting to construct a soccer field.
There are soccer fields already at Kittiwake Park, Bryanston Gate Park and Pioneer Plains Park. What is not included in the design plan that you have seen is an intent to install a single soccer goal within the ‘open space’ area. That would allow for informal soccer play. A full soccer field would be booked and programmed by the City, which would allow associations and those from outside the immediate neighbourhood to use the field.
As per above, I am working with staff to look at alternative options based on comments received (i.e. splash pad), but currently a mini field option is not viable. Saving the trees and working the design for the park around the existing natural elements within the park block is a priority for the City, and will be a valued asset for the community for many years to come.
Concerning a splash pad, they are not routinely included in new park construction projects unless additional funding has been secured and/or other recreation elements are removed from the design plan. It is an unfortunate reality that developing a new park is getting more and more expensive each time a park is constructed. What is included in all new park projects is the ability to add elements in the future. Elements such as a splash pad – water and hydro infrastructure is constructed within the park property line(s) with all new park construction projects.
Should you have any questions on this file or wish to provide feedback you can email my office or contact Planner Mike Russett Mike.Russett@ottawa.ca