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City releases feedback on plan for civic core

The city Civic Core District Plan project is on the council agenda on Monday to showcase what was heard during public consultation and for Council to decide next steps.

The Civic Core District Plan (CCDP) is a guide that defines the long-term vision for the municipal properties in the downtown area near the Prince George Conference and Civic Centre. Community engagement launched in August and ran through September offering a number of community engagement opportunities. These included community round table sessions, pop-up events at markets and an online community survey.

In total there were over 1000 surveys submitted, and all the feedback from this and the in-person sessions has now been summarized. You can read more about the engagement results in the staff report.

The project goals are to:

  • Strengthen the local economy
  • Enhance the vibrancy of downtown
  • Provide amenities to enhance the quality of life of Prince George citizens

The plan area of the Civic Core District is limited to the municipal owned and operated properties surrounding City Hall, including: Kopar Memorial Arena, the Conference and Civic Centre, Canfor Leisure Pool, Prince George Public Library (Bob Harkins branch), Two Rivers Art Gallery and Civic Plaza.

Map of the civic core district, with dotted red border around City Hall, the Canfor Leisure Pool, the former location of the Four Seasons Pool, Kopar Memorial Arena, the Prince George Public Library Bob Harkins branch, Prince George Conference and Civic Centre, the Two Rivers Art Gallery, the Knights Inn, and Canada Games Plaza.

*Image updated December 2023 to reflect purchase of the Knights Inn as that is now a civic property.

The top three big infrastructure items/civic facilities that respondents indicated they want included within the CCDP area are:

  1. Shops and cafes with housing (51.84%)
  2. Performing arts centre (43.41%)
  3. Ice Arena (29.46%)

There were also a number of short-term, temporary, low-cost uses suggested to improve the area in the interim such as benches, public art, bike racks, free wi-fi, indoor recreation and more.

Council may decide Monday to either seek consultant services to prepare conceptual site designs for the area, including replacement of aging infrastructure. Or they may focus on specific areas only, or the third recommendation is to defer the project altogether.

Director of Planning and Development, Deanna Wasnik, said the feedback and ideas around the Civic Core District Plan is an important next step in shaping how the facilities downtown are enhanced.

“We heard a lot of feedback, with positive ideas and passionate responses. We also absolutely hear that people, while excited, are also concerned around the cost of new civic facilities and what this means for their tax dollars, and we are certainly going into this being mindful of that,” she said.

“This is why this will be a long-term plan done in phases.”

More information on the CCDP can be found via the city website here.

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