The City has taken on an unacceptable level of risk committing to $200 million+ cost when it doesn’t have the financial capacity to cushion the impact of unforeseen events. Furthermore, it can’t count on the District to share operating costs in the long-term since the agreement allows the District to walk away from the deal with one year’s notice.
The City intends to pay for the project with sales of density timed to match the cash requirements of the project. The staging of the project has been organized to minimize the developer’s risk of a declining housing market. In other cases where the City has paid for a new public facility with density, the facility is built first and the developer builds the housing afterwards.
The City’s borrowing capacity is capped by the MFA at $90 million. It doesn’t have the ability to bridge a spike in the housing market or a major cost overrun so it has developed contingency plans to immediately cut out public amenities or sell more density to cover any cost overruns or revenue shortfalls.
When the facility was originally built in 1966, ownership, operating costs were divided 50/50 with the District. The usership then and now is roughly divided 50/50 between the City and District. Removing amenities or adding more density will affect North Vancouver residents in the District just as much as in the City.
The City would rather put the community at risk of getting an inferior recreation centre, or more density than it expected than collaborate with the District to rebuild an asset that is just as important to District citizens as citizens of the City.
On October 20th, your vote for Guy Heywood for Mayor will be a vote for common sense at City Hall.
So is it too late to get the district on board to share costs? I’m in favor of community centre development but agree with your concerns re: sharing of cost with the district (esp since citizens of both will use the facility).
Have being doing more research. It’s not to late to get the District involved but I don’t think anyone except me is going to be able to get it.
Does the expected revenue projections not cover the cost of borrowing and operating costs without the 50/50 split with the District? If not, why was this project allowed to move forward even if the “opportunity to sell density” existed. Who was responsible for doing the financial planning for this project?
The City has not spent anytime modelling the long term operating costs of a scenario where the Rec Commission and the shared cost arrangements were cancelled. It’s critical that they do so because the District has said they won’t agree to pay extra costs of a larger facility.
So are you for or against the 50 metre pool? Your comments leave me little confused.
I’m not opposed to a 50m pool. I’m opposed to the City going it alone to pay for it and be on the hook for long-term operating costs. The City has not secured the support of the District, which is terminable on one year’s notice, and is underwriting a competition-level swimming facility with no support regional, provincial or federal governments or user groups. Why should City taxpayers do that?
Sorry for the confusion. I am in favour of a 50m pool so long as the long term operating costs don’t fall exclusively on the City. In the current agreement they do, which I think is unfair to City Taxpayers but also easy to fix if there were time to properly negotiate with the District and other stakeholders.