Kingston is one of the largest municipalities in Ontario by geographic area – comprising both a defined urban core comprised of the existing City, the westward expansion of the City in what was formerly Kingston Township, and increased accessibility to an from the City through transportation improvements including the new Third Crossing of the Great Cataraqui River. Our job as the City’s advisors is to re-imagine the City in the future based on expected growth, higher expectations for the quality of services and facilities, and ready access to parks and open space.

In a City with a large rural fringe and significant natural heritage system, a major goals was to tie recreation and parks planning into the City’s objectives for active transportation, accessibility, waterfront development and reduced carbon footprint associated with municipal assets.

Sierra was part of a multi-disciplinary project team led by Monteith Brown Planning Consultants to develop a Recreation Facilities Master Plan for the City of Toronto for the next 20 years. This is an update to the existing plan developed in the early 2000s.Sierra worked exclusively on the development of a complete picture of existing funding mechanisms to support the acquisition, development and maintenance of parks and indoor facilities. More specifically the output from our work is a capital funding and phasing plan for development in each of the geographic sections of the City (Central, East, West, North) of the facilities proposed as part of the master plan. Our work involved a modelling exercise to determine the availability of funding from the full range of sources including parkland reserves, city-wide versus area-specific reserves, Development Charges, and Section 37 bonusing payments, among other sources. The modelling allowed an assessment of funding shortfall versus surplus in different parts of the City over time. The analysis has been used to help refine the plan and create the necessary 20 year implementation plan.

Sierra Planning and Management led a multi-disciplinary team in the cost-benefit assessment of arena needs and possible capital expenditure solutions (both new development and repurposing existing rinks).

Specifically, the study’s purpose was to inform the deliberations of the City’s Arena Task Force, providing a series of recommendations and next steps. In order to provide this, the team undertook a review of background materials and trends, developed facility options complete with site servicing requirements, facilitated public consultation activities, assessed the site impacts / opportunities and requirements, as well as developed capital costs and a phasing strategy for implementation.