Several city playgrounds get new equipment


Playground equipment in Malaspina Park in Lower College Heights in March 2016. Malaspina’s playground equipment is on the list of play equipment scheduled for removal as per the Playground Plan component of the City’s Park Strategy, which was approved by Council in January. Photo courtesy of the City of Prince George

Dozens of Prince George playgrounds built and installed in civic parks decades ago no longer meet the standards set out by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). In response, the City of Prince George is reinvesting in its civic playground infrastructure.

The city’s five-year Playground Plan outlines the schedule for replacing 25 of the city’s 66 playgrounds with CSA-compliant equipment. The plan also involves the removal of 20 playgrounds, though the locations will remain as parkland or open green spaces. The plan does not include school playgrounds.

“The Playground Plan will help to ensure CSA standards and levels of quality are met now and in the future,” said the City’s Manager of Parks and Solid Waste, Sean LeBrun, in a press release. “The plan aims to improve playground conditions, safety, and maintenance, and includes a five-year strategy to ensure Prince George has a reliable inventory of CSA-compliant equipment that is safe for community use.”

The city is working on a request for proposal (RFP) for the supply and installation of new play equipment at four existing playgrounds: Byng Park, St. Mary’s Park, North College Park, and Eaglenest Park. Construction of the new play equipment is scheduled to take place in August, 2017, with a completion date set for September.

Next month, parks staff will begin removing non-CSA compliant playground equipment from the 20 parks identified through the playgrounds assessment as being the lowest priority for reinvestment according to the Park Strategy, which was approved by council in January. Priorities were identified and set based on condition, public consultation, and distribution of parks city-wide. Once a playground is removed, the affected parks will continue to be maintained as a city parks or greenbelts. City staff will distribute brochures to residences in the adjacent neighbourhoods prior to the removal of any play equipment.

Further information about the City’s Playground Plan and Park Strategy can be found on the City’s website.