What new parking options will be created to support the project?

A 3-level underground parking structure containing approximately 930 parking stalls is proposed for the west side of Glenanna Road. Approximately 330 of these will support the new City Centre Library, Performing Arts Centre, and Seniors & Youth Centre, while the remaining will be dedicated to the 50-storey apartment.

Underground parking will also be created along Esplanade South to support the two proposed condominiums.

What will happen to the existing Seniors Centre?

The City of Pickering currently runs senior programs out of East Shore Community Centre, located at 910 Liverpool Road South. After many years of serving local residents, there are no further structural enhancements that can be done to the facility to ensure it continues to meet the needs of its senior and youth clients.

At this current time, the City intends to maintain the lawn bowling greens on this site and will release details as the transition is determined, subject to Council’s approval.

What kind of activities/services will be offered at the new Seniors & Youth Centre?

Our youth programs and events will range from free to fee-based, and touch on a variety of activities including sport, recreation, leisure, camps, drop-in programs, after-school programs, entertainment and events, volunteer opportunities, and youth leadership.

Our proposed seniors’ fee-based services will include programs, classes, games, events and workshops for a diverse range of skills and interests in the field of sport, recreation, leisure and art, specifically designed for the 55+ age group.

With the larger space, residents should expect an enhanced level of services and programming. Additionally, as space is available, a range of recreation and arts activities will be offered to children, families and adults.

What kind of amenities/services are proposed for the Performing Arts Centre?

This new Performing Art Centre (PAC) will have world-class acoustics, audience sight lines, and comfortable seating. PAC is envisioned to include a 600-seat theatre, with a large lobby for both public/private activities and rehearsal/program space for City dance classes, music lessons & camps, theatrical/comedy performances, private rentals and more. The Ontario Philharmonic is planned to be the resident orchestra.

The Performing Arts Centre will connect to the underground parking garage, with a coat check and flow into the foyer with the box office and service bar. The foyer of the Performing Arts Centre, available for private rentals, will open into the public square to accommodate larger festivals and events.

Why does the Central Library need an expansion?

The Pickering Public Library is an award-winning City facility that provides equitable access to learning resources for all ages. As one of Ontario’s most heavily used Library facilities, the Central Library annually lends almost 1 million items, receives over 515,000 visits, and offers innovative technology and programs to its users.

Through a 2019-2023 Strategic Plan development exercise, resident engagement indicated that Central Library lacked functional space.

Expanding the Central Library will allow the City to better serve a diverse and growing City.

What will the public square be used for?

The public square will link the new Seniors & Youth Centre, the City Centre Library and Performing Arts Centre. The space is envisioned as a vibrant gathering space for residents and community, engaging visitors and guests in new experiences, a taste of Pickering culture, and a reflection of the vibrant and diverse community that is the City of Pickering.

The public square provides a unique opportunity to remove barriers to participation for event organizers and community events with built-in infrastructure, planned accessible lighting and security features, public art, and seating. Amenities in the public square may include public art, water features, temporary staging, shaded areas, permanent and temporary seating, areas for performances, and play based features like chess or interactive art.

What is the current status of the City Centre project?

With the authority of Council, City staff have been developing the City Centre vision in collaboration with Ontario Pension Board Realty Inc. (OPB Reality Inc.) since 2018. This vision introduces 3 new municipally owned and operated community facilities (Library, Seniors & Youth Centre, Performing Arts Centre), and a pedestrian focused Public Square and Public Realm in concert with high rise residential developments by OPB, as part of a larger Master Plan design to create a dynamic & vibrant City Centre ideal for live, work & play.

By early 2020, progress on the City Centre project was on track to complete the design of municipal facilities in 2020, tender the construction of municipal facilities in late 2020 subject to Council’s approval, with an anticipated completion of late 2023. Accordingly, Council approved the 2020 Capital Budget which included the City Centre Capital Project Budget of $187,311,000.

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic emerged on the global scene and caused a province wide shut-down in April 2020 which halted progress on the City Centre project. At the Special Meeting of Council on April 27, 2020, through Report FIN 05-21, Council approved that the City Centre project be paused until Fall 2020 due to the economic uncertainly as a result of the COVID pandemic.

At the Council meeting of May 25, 2021, staff presented Report CAO 04-21 for Council’s consideration entitled “Pickering City Centre Project – Construction Cost Estimating Services and Next Steps”. By Resolution #604/21, staff were authorized by Council to complete a series of one-time actions to support the ongoing development of the project. This included but was not limited to the following:

  1. The collection of feedback on the City Centre design;
  2. The negotiation of terms and conditions to form the master development agreement with OPB;
  3. The procurement of a construction consultant;
  4. The completion of a parking study; and
  5. The preparation of a 5-year financial strategy for the City Centre project (for Council’s consideration in Fall 2021) that was to include the updated City Centre capital and operating costs, projected revenue and funding streams to support those costs, and an analysis of the impacts on other City debt funded capital projects.

On October 21, 2021, staff presented Reports CS 35-21 and FIN 15-21 which returned this important information to Council. Through Resolution #700/21, Council authorized staff to proceed with the City Centre Project by completing specific actions that included but was not limited to the following:

  1. Establishing the City Centre Project’s fixed cost ceiling at $207.70 Million;
  2. Approving architects-Alliance to prepare construction drawings and tender documents for the City Centre Project; and
  3. Approving various investments that, subject to Council’s approval, will enable the award of the construction contract for the City Centre Project in approximately April 2022.

To that end, Finance staff completed the procurement process for general contractor (GC) consulting services of the City Centre Project as was described to Council in a presentation by Shawn A. Oakley of Deloitte LLP made at the June 28, 2021 Council Meeting Re: City Centre Project Procurement Process (Delegation 7.1). The City hired an independent third-party fairness monitor to observe various aspects of the procurement process. Through Resolution #700/21 (FIN 15-21), Council approved the award of the General Contractor Services consulting contract (related to preconstruction work for the City Centre) to EllisDon Corporation.

On November 1, 2021, Council also approved Report LEG 19-21 through Resolution #722/21 which confirmed that Council wishes to proceed with the City Centre Project and that staff be directed to finalize the Master Agreement with OPB.

Concurrent with this effort, City Development staff have been working with representatives of the Pickering Town Centre (PTC) Ownership to facilitate a Master Plan Review of PTC Lands on the west side of Glenanna Road, between Kingston Road and Pickering Parkway, to complement the City Centre project and implement the City’s vision to create a vibrant, mixed use, pedestrian focused downtown. A Site Plan Application has been submitted in February 2022 for the 3 municipal facilities, the 50-storey apartment building, and the new public square. The City has also received a Site Plan Application for the City owned lands on the South side of Esplanade South for 2 towers (38 and 30 storeys). Existing underground municipal services (storm sewer, sanitary sewer and water main), which are located under the parking lot on the Pickering Town Centre lands, will be relocated to Glenanna Road and Pickering Parkway.

Key Milestones in 2022:

  1. Council will consider approving the City Centre project budget in the 2022 Capital Budget (which is revised from the 2020 Capital Budget). The Budget Meeting is scheduled for March 17, 2022.
  2. Council will consider approving the Construction Tender Award of the General Contractor for the City Centre Project in approximately April 2022.

Council’s approval of the total project cost and the award of the General Contractor is required prior to the commencement of construction. Subject to Council’s approval, the above noted municipal services relocation works, followed by the construction of all municipal facilities, is expected to be underway late Spring 2022 with a targeted completion date of Fall 2025 for the municipal facilities.

How much will the City Centre cost?

In the City of Pickering 2020 Capital Budget, the total project cost was estimated at $187,311,000. See page 21 of the 2020 budget for more information.

In Report FIN 15-21, the City Centre Project Expenditure Ceiling (April 2022) was established at $207.70 Million with Development Charge (DC) funding providing 53.2 percent of the total project costs.

The Construction Tender Award of the General Contractor for the City Centre Project, anticipated to be presented to Council in April 2022 for their approval, will establish the approved Project Budget.

What is the status of the future redevelopment of CAPREIT’s lands?

CAPREIT is the property owner and manager for the Pickering Place apartments, located at 1865 Glenanna Road.

With close proximity to the City Centre Redevelopment Project, both the City of Pickering and OPB Realty Inc., owners of Pickering Town Centre, have encouraged collaborative discussions with CAPREIT from the onset of the City Centre redevelopment project.

CAPREIT, and their planning consultants Urban Strategies, have presented a preliminary conceptual master plan for the future re-development of their property, which includes both pedestrian and road connections to Esplanade South. This will be phased to support the relocation of the existing tenants. To date, the City has not received any formal applications to redevelop their lands. Should the City receive an application, area residents will be notified and will have the opportunity to participate in the planning review process.