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Churchill Park Master Plan

Updated April 25, 2013


Project Summary

The City of Hamilton is undertaking the master plan process for Churchill Park, located at 145 Cline Ave. N in the Westdale Neighbourhood of Ward 1. The master plan will guide the future improvements and management of the park. The City's Landscape Architectural Services section is managing the project and will be running 3 processes simultaneously to ensure all views and concerns are being considered. These processes are:
  • Public Consultation process
  • City Staff consulting process
  • Site planning and park design process
The master planning project began in the summer of 2010 and is proceeding towards completion in 2013.


Project Status

A revised master plan, dated March 2, 2013 has been posted for public review. This master plan is very similar to one presented at the Public Information Centre #3 (PIC) on March 29, 2012 with the major exception being that the references to a skateboard circuit have been removed. This is the master plan the City intends to advance for approvals.

Churchill Park Master Plan

The master plan contains the features and park management directions obtained from the extensive public and staff consultation process, as well as, from reviewing hundreds of comments from citizens. During the master planning process, many issues were raised and required compromise and consensus amongst the public and staff stakeholders. Everyone’s point of view was heard and seriously considered. The proposed master plan represents the best plan for moving forward.
At the PIC#3, the draft master plan was presented to the public. A reference to the creation of a skateboard circuit and 4 possible locations were being considered. This was in response to many expressions of interest from the public at the PIC #2 to create such a facility. Given the comments received from the public at PIC #3, it became apparent a special meeting was required specifically on the skateboard circuit issue.
A special Ward 1 meeting was held on October 9, 2012 at the Westdale Branch of the Hamilton Public Library to discuss all aspects of the concept for a skateboard circuit. Approximately 100 citizens attended and provided meaningful comments on both sides of the issue. Following a review of the comments expressed at the meeting and written on the comment sheets, it has been decided that a skateboard circuit will not be advanced in Churchill Park. Staff and the Ward Councillor will work together to find a suitable site in another location in Ward 1.
The 3rd Public information Centre (P.I.C.) was held on March 29, 2012 to present the draft master plan and supporting presentation materials. These display panels are provided below for your information. The City held its first public meeting on October 6, 2010, and organized a Public Stakeholders Advisory Group (PSAG) and a Staff Stakeholder Advisory Group (SSAG) to provide advice and guidance during the master planning process. A 2nd General Public Meeting was held on Thurs. May 12, 2011 to provide a project update and draft concepts.

The park master planning process has followed the six phases:
  • Phase 1 - Problems and Opportunities Identification
  • Phase 2 - Criteria for Success
  • Phase 3 - Develop Alternate Solutions
  • Phase 4 - Develop Design Concepts for Preferred Solutions
  • Phase 5 - Prepare Draft Master Plan and Supporting Report
  • Phase 6 - Obtain Master Plan Approvals
,/ul>As of April 2013, the project is in Phase 6 of the process. The PSAG has had 4 meetings and SSAG have had 3 meetings with the consulting team.
Following approval of the master plan, an implementation strategy will be developed and each improvement/project will be subject to approval of a capital budget through the normal city capital budget process.


Project Background

Churchill Park is located in west Hamilton in the Westdale Neighbourhood. It is a developed park operated by the City of Hamilton, however the land is owned by the Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG). The "developed park' abuts a natural woodlot, ravine lands and Cootes Paradise on the northern boundary all owned by the RBG. These lands are included within the Niagara Escarpment Plan and designated as part of the Niagara Escarpment Parks and Open Space System (NEPOSS).

Churchill Park small site loc

This master plan project shall focus on the developed lands that the city operates as shown in green on the attached plan. The study area includes two parcels of property that total 19.12 hectares (47.24 acres) in size. The athletic fields are 14.56 hectares (35.98 acres) and bounded by Parkside Dr. on the east, Cline Ave. on the south and Marion Ave. N. on the west. The other parcel is the former RBG Teaching Gardens which are 4.56 hectares (11.27 acres) in size. These lands are on Oak Knoll Dr.

The athletic field parcel currently contains a former lawn bowling facility and clubhouse, 3 baseball fields, 3 soccer pitches, a cricket pitch, field house, spray pad, and playground area. Since 1996, the city has been using the former RBG Teaching Gardens site for vegetable allotment gardens, and a private citizen organization called The Friends of the Aviary have been operating an Aviary in the buildings.

Cootes Paradise is a provincially significant wetland and water body and the resting place for migratory birds. Churchill Park sits above Cootes Paradise on a plateau. The banks between the park and Cootes Paradise are wooded, but very fragile with evidence of severe erosion in various places.

Westdale was founded in the 1920s as one of Canada's first planned communities. In 1927, the City of Hamilton Parks Board purchased 152.57 hectares (377 acres) of excellent land consisting of 53.83 hectares (133 acres) of water lots, 52.61 hectares (130 acres) of hillside, and 46.14 hectares (114 acres) of level land for conservation, recreation and sports fields. An agreement on land use between the City and McMaster University was completed in 1931.

In 1941, the Royal Botanical Gardens Act was enacted and the lands acquired by the City were conveyed to the RBG for their care and management. The City continued to have use of the plateau lands for use as an athletic and community park. Originally called Westdale Park, the park was renamed in 1945 as Churchill Park in honour of Sir Winston S. Churchill.


Project References and Images


Summary of Consultations

The Churchill Park Master Plan process has included an extensive consultation with the general public, a Public Stakeholder Advisory Group, a Staff Stakeholder Advisory Group, and the Royal Botanical Gardens staff. Summaries of these meetings and display materials have been posted on this web page. (revise paragraph) The City held its first public meeting on October 6, 2010, and organized a Public Stakeholder Advisory Group (PSAG) and a Staff Stakeholder Advisory Group (SSAG) to provide advice and guidance during the master planning process. A 2nd General Public Meeting was held on May 12, 2011 to provide a project update and draft concepts. The 3rd Public Information Centre (P.I.C.) was held on March 29, 2012 to present the draft master plan and supporting presentation materials. These display materials are provided below for your information.

A special Ward 1 meeting was held on October 9, 2012 at the Westdale Branch of the Hamilton Public Library to discuss all aspects of the concept for a skateboard circuit.

Ward 1 Public Meeting
A special Ward 1 meeting, Chaired by Councillor B. McHattie, was held on October 9, 2012 from 6:30pm to 9:00pm at the Westdale Branch of the Hamilton Public Library, 955 King St. West, Hamilton to discuss all aspects of the concept for a skateboard circuit. Approximately 100 citizens attended and provided meaningful comments on both sides of the issue. Following a review of the comments expressed at the meeting and written on the comment sheets, it has been decided that a skateboard circuit will not be advanced in Churchill Park. Staff and the Ward Councillor will work together to find a suitable site in another location in Ward 1.

Public Information Centre 3
Materials presented March 29, 2012: Public Comments Received
Public Comments Received

Comment Sheets from Public Information Centre 2
Public Information Centre 2
Materials presented May 12, 2011: Public Comments Received
Staff Stakeholder Advisory Group (SSAG) Meeting 2
Materials presented March 31, 2011: Public Stakeholder Advisory Group (PSAG) Meeting 3
Materials presented March 2, 2011: Public Stakeholder Advisory Group (PSAG) Meeting 2
Materials from January 11, 2011:  Public Stakeholder Advisory Group (PSAG) Meeting 1
Materials from November 30, 2010: Staff Stakeholder Advisory Group Meeting 1
Presentation from November 19, 2010: Public Information Centre 1
Materials from October 6, 2010:

Contact

Lawrence Stasiuk, OALA, CSLA
Landscape Architect
Phone: 905-546-2424 extension 2292
lawrence.stasiuk@hamilton.ca