Gates Park Soccer Hub
Port Coquitlam will begin actively planning for a state-of-the-art soccer and community hub at Gates Park, following the announcement of a $6.7-million provincial grant on Apr. 24, 2022.
The new facility will bring state-of-the-art tournament and practice fields, the BC Soccer Association headquarters, spectator seating, washrooms, a public plaza and other amenities to the west end of Gates Park.
The agreement guarantees the City 80 per cent use of the turf field and public amenities. In addition to improved facilities and field time for local sports groups, the project will bring local jobs, new public spaces and economic spinoffs for local businesses and the community. It will also build on the energy and excitement from other nearby improvements such as the downtown revitalization and new Port Coquitlam Community Centre.
Construction is anticipated to begin later this year and be completed in 2023.
Provided by the B.C. Ministry of Municipal Affairs, the provincial funding follows five years of planning and discussions between the City, B.C. Soccer Association (B.C. Soccer) and PoCo Euro-Rite FC (PoCo Soccer) in cooperation with PoCo Sport Alliance.
The project will redevelop about four hectares (10 acres) at the west end of the popular 15-hectare (37-acre) athletic park, which currently has multiple grass and synthetic turf fields, ball diamonds, tennis courts and other amenities. A new synthetic turf field will replace a grass field at the far end of the park that is underutilized due to turf conditions and drainage issues.
In addition to the $6.7 million in provincial funding, the $12.2-million project will be funded with $2.5 million each from the City and B.C. Soccer, and $500,000 from PoCo Soccer. The City will fund its share from accumulated surplus funds.
Port Coquitlam, which will maintain and operate the facility, will have guaranteed use of the new turf field about 80 per cent of the time across the year, for use by local soccer groups. The remainder would be dedicated to B.C. Soccer to support programming, education offerings, events and tournament activity.
A preliminary design has been developed and now, with provincial funding secured in spring 2022, the city is proceeding with finalizing the design.
- A state-of-the-art synthetic turf field built to international competition (FIFA) standards,
- A two-storey, 1,157-square-metre (about 12,500-square-foot) building which would primarily be B.C. Soccer’s new headquarters and would include PoCo Soccer office, storage, meetings space, public washrooms and other amenities,
- A multi-use public plaza for community gathering and events,
- A road along the south side of the park from Reeve Street, leading to a parking lot with car and bus parking adjacent to the new hub,
- Field lighting, bleachers and covered team benches,
- A synthetic turf soccer warmup area, and
- An enhanced central pedestrian boulevard extending to Reeve Street.
The project would require the replacement of the washroom facility at the west end of the park with the new building, and conversion of the grass field at the far west end of the park to synthetic turf.
The Traboulay PoCo Trail would continue to encircle Gates Park and provide trail users with a view of activities in the new hub.
- Enhances local recreation facilities with a new turf field, a public plaza for events, and meeting/training space for sport groups.
- Creates jobs and economic spinoffs related to the BC Soccer headquarters and FIFA-calibre fields.
- Increases field time and amenities for local children, youth and adult sport.
- Generates interest in the game of soccer and sport in general.
- Adds world-class playing and spectator facilities that open up new hosting opportunities, such as lead-up events for the 2026 World Cup to be hosted by Canada, the U.S. and Mexico.
The City will continue to update the public as it finalizes the design during 2022 in anticipation of construction beginning before year’s end.
Based on the preliminary design, no tree removal is anticipated and public access will continue along the park’s perimeter trail.
The upcoming planning work will include robust consideration of potential environmental and community impacts, including public access to the park and trails during and after construction, protection of nearby natural spaces and waterways, drainage, rainwater runoff, and traffic.
Updates will be provided as information becomes available through the designated webpage portcoquitlam.ca/soccerhub and the City’s social media channels. Comments and questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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