NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Main Topics Identified Identify a concept for the waterfront (mixing commercial/residential; enabling destination nodes from Pearson Bridge to Departure Bay; clean up; entertainment; focal point for general public). Formal pedestrian connections from neighbourhoods to the waterfront. Increase density generally so there is an economic base for providing amenities. Higher density, higher buildings at Terminal Park. Promote character of waterfront (build on marine activity nature of Newcastle Channel; floating homes) Remove Corridor designation (Estevan, Vancouver, Stewart). Terminal Avenue enhancement (slow traffic to 2 lanes, plant trees, provide mid-rise higher density buildings). Cover open ditches, replace with sidewalks. Develop Sealand market as a Farmers market. Extend seawall walkway to Departure Bay. More crosswalks across Stewart and Terminal. Deal with pollution at waterfront (commercial/industrial). Single family designation for Beach Estates and Brechin Hill. Deal with Stewart Avenue traffic – speed and congestion. Urban art. Seawall access, continuity, beautification. Stronger neighbourhood association and communication. Traffic calming. Views. Access to waterfront. Better sidewalks. More and better green space / parks. Stewart Avenue from ferry to downtown (street cleaning; improve pedestrian access; clean up signage; slow traffic; washrooms). Height restrictions – don’t block views – don’t spoil character of block. Walking boulevard on Vancouver Avenue – walkers, bikes, sidewalks, trees, access to Stewart Ave and Chinese Memorial Gardens. Industrial redevelopment – gas plant, shipyard, concrete. Light commercial – corner store, coffee shop, book store. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Discussion One – Land Use and Economy 1) Thinking about your neighbourhood, in what ways do you want to see the neighbourhood develop and in what ways would you like to see it remain the same? Maintain single family dwellings on Brechin Hill. Brechin Hill character homes undergoing refurbishment. Retain existing mix of uses, heights and densities; retain existing building sizes. Good mix of residential, multi-family and single family. Strict controls on size of new homes. New homes follow character of neighbourhood. City to follow neighbourhood, not land developers. Low rise, high density in south Newcastle, high rise, high density east of Terminal and Estevan; mixed use marine and residential east of Stewart. Redevelop old motels along Terminal; here can increase height and density. Mixed use along the waterfront and Terminal Avenue (here higher density). Restrict building height and protect views on Stewart Avenue. Residential densification along Stewart Avenue. Higher density residential on waterfront, not high rise. Promote boating / marina activity. Retain heritage / character homes throughout the area. Mix heritage with new. Increase density through carriage houses and secondary suites. Better access to waterfront; include waterfront public park; continue extension of waterfront walkway. Destination focal points – development along waterfront walkway. Neighbourhood activities/uses along waterfront but retain marine uses as well ( eg. False Creek, Market). Better traffic control. Enhance views. More pruning of trees. Restrict commercial truck traffic to Duke Point ferry terminal, not Departure Bay. Continue to develop a mix of land uses, waterfront; promote heritage and natural environment; increase job availability. Connection to Newcastle Island. Extend Corridor designation along Stewart Avenue to the ferry. Cruise ship visitors want unique walks, something about Nanaimo – exploit history. Restaurants, coffee shops to walk to. Corner stores in walking distance. We need to delete the Urban Corridor designation in the Official Community Plan as it applies to Vancouver and Stewart Avenue. This was an arbitrary designation in advance of a neighbourhood plan. We do not want a 7-11 on every corner. The plan should respect the vintage character of Vancouver Ave, outside the OCQ; this is the only other vintage area in Nanaimo. Vancouver Ave’s character is one of large lots with mature trees. Important it keeps this green character. Vancouver should be turned into a pedestrian and bicycle friendly street with sidewalks, a bike lane, and proper bus platforms. Trees should be planted on the west side of Vancouver Ave. In some areas (White Spot and some condo complexes), sidewalk is bordered by gravel instead of grass. It should be changed to grass. Vancouver is not used as a connecting street, it carries mostly local traffic. Private development in this area should contain large green spaces. Newcastle has lots of multi-storied multifamily units, combined with older family homes and heritage houses. The heritage houses are great and should not be hidden. Many of the older rental apartment buildings have unattractive box design and should be upgraded. All the streets are facing the waterfront. Further densification should be carefully planned and not interfere with existing viewscapes. Six story buildings could be built around Terminal Mall and along N. Terminal Ave., not on Stewart Ave or east side of Vancouver Ave. There are already too many multi-family residential units in the Newcastle area. The older apartment buildings should be upgraded with less parking and more green.Two to three story townhouses could be built on large lots, especially on the west side of Vancouver Ave. There's also room for six-storey development in the commercial centre of White Spot, KFC, the Laundromat, and the motel. There's a lot of wasted space, mostly used for parking, and hardly any green. Neighbourhood lacks a meeting place; that could be developed here. Don’t overcommercialize Stewart Avenue; should stay mostly residential. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments 2) What types of uses are lacking in the neighbourhood, and where would you locate them? Lack of parks, fitness park; have disconnected public parks; they need definition and clean up. Fine with existing mix. Lacking mix of housing, multi-family residential, medical centre, community centre, neighbourhood grocery store, not a convenience store, both Stewart Ave area and Newcastle area. Commercial development to serve residents and tourists; no big box stores, strip malls or fast food outlets. Locate services, cultural, community, parks, public art in Stewart Avenue area. Lacking services – cultural, community facilities, art gallery, art school, parks, public art throughout the neighbourhood. Could create a public art ‘theme’ for each neighbourhood (eg/ on-street signs, corners). Safe bike routes. Transportation interchange at Terminal Park and at ferry location. Create an area similar to Vancouver’s Granville Market on Pimbury Point. High density residential should be located at Terminal Park shopping centre above retail stores. Neighbourhood pub in Newcastle would be okay. Support appropriate landscaping. Public art park at Sealand. Need community village plan at Stones and Sealand area. Food passenger to Vancouver. 3) Are there any land uses in the neighbourhood that cause problems? What do you think would resolve this? Poorly designed commercial/residential development. Lacking cultural benefits. No two- to six-storey development in the neighbourhood. No fast food outlets. No big box stores. Promote community gardens, increase food production. Better mixed residential / commercial. Pedestrian unfriendly; highway rail barriers, ferry traffic and lineups. Focus mixed development along water and Terminal Avenue. Waterfront residential development with underground parking. Sealand (green space, city market, restaurants, night clubs, theme park). Redevelop shipyard. Need public washrooms. Art on the seawall. No additional industrial development. Gas odours from Petro Canada. Move Petro Canada site – fire hazard. Boating / marine activities. Working marina – needs cleaning up (aesthetics, environment). Industrial operations noise (eg/ sandblasting), and fire hazards. Replace with green spaces / parks, community facilities or low-rise residential. Industrial facilities on waterfront should be phased out and replaced with low rise hotels and upscale condos. Concern with high rise development and lack of cohesive design in multi-family buildings along waterfront. Keep neighbourhood a people oriented, residential area by maintaining suitable housing with natural environment (scale and balance). On Vancouver Ave some of the sidewalks are bordered by gravel instead of grass. That's ugly. Those borders are City property and the City can change them from gravel to grass. The laundromat on the corner of Vancouver Ave and N. Terminal is housed in a very ugly building, stands there like lost in the area. This property and surroundings should be renovated and some landscaping should be done here. The old motels on N. Terminal have the same problem. Hardly any landscaping, lots of empty parking areas, and ugly lowrise buildings. Here is where redeveloping would make a difference. There are some quite unsuitable land uses in the Brechin area. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Discussion Two – Community and Social Enrichment 1) How would you encourage a sense of community in the neighbourhood? Brechin Hill homeowners are refurbishing old homes and sharing in the experience. Higher density next to green space. Community events/festivals, street picnics, block parties, community gardens. Signs designating the area; i.e. Brechin Hill – sign toppers. Community gardens alongside railroad. Public art at gateway to Stewart/Vancouver and along seawall. Community centres, public parks, sidewalks. Free beer at the community hall. Barney Moriez Park more adult oriented (eg/ community garden, picnic shelter, community garbage pickups). Establish a neighbourhood watch program. Create a meeting place. Have sidewalks and benches. Safe bus stop platforms. More trees and landscaping to encourage walking. Develop a farmers market in the Sealand area. Do people acknowledge homeless as neighbours? Too many break ins. Enhance walkability – more benches and trees, especially in high traffic areas. Stone wall along Stewart – aesthetically pleasing. 2) How would you address safety and security within your neighbourhood? Adequate street lighting, sidewalks, Stewart Avenue overpass to waterfront. Controlled crosswalks along Stewart. Quck response to hospital, ambulance, etc. More people = safer. Neighbourhood Watch, community policing. Education program about preventing burglaries. Control speed on Stewart Avenue; add more crosswalks; bike lanes; traffic slowing techniques. Homeless people sleeping in parks and vacant land. More police patrol of neighbourhood. Dying/diseased trees along Brechin Rd should be removed. Confront prostitution. 3) How would you maintain and / or improve the livability of the neighbourhood? Livability of the neighbourhood is good. Negative – amount of traffic on Juniper Street. The “Corridor” is a negative impact to Belford/Juniper areas; development can be detrimental (eg/ Subway, cheque cashing store has negative impacts on this area). Remove Corridor designation fro Vancouver Avenue and Stewart Avenue. Keep existing density to maintain the community. Housing options/ affordability (eg/ student/small units, hotel accommodation); secondary suites okay if maintained. No more apartment complexes, instead affordable townhouse development. No more rental properties, too many already. Public art, community gardens (possibly along railroad tracks?), community services and facilities. Improve transit to different parts of the city (VIU, north, airport, Duke Point). Redirect ferry traffic, particularly large trucks and motorcycles. Keep mixed uses and mix of residential. Gateway gardens and landscaped traffic controls to calm traffic and create a marked transition into residential areas. Connect green spaces, promote walking paths. Kayak access to Newcastle Channel. Create “village” centers as part of new development. Amenities within walking distance. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Strong community associations with reinforcement from the City. Neighbourhood associations could organize alcohol free street parties from time to time. Higher density residential – with CPTED principles. Focal points for community rely on waterfront area and shopping, etc. Gateways. Likes: affordable housing; age & ethnic diversity; smaller homes; existing parks & playgrounds; views to Newcastle Channel & Newcastle Island; business of marine foreshore; sea-plane activity; boats travelling Newcastle Channel. Development should be environmentally beneficial not to the advantage of developers. Stewart Avenue is gateway to Nanaimo and should reflect that; build sign, provide sense of community. Encourage Stewart as a promenade. Livability – mix residential with commercial along both sides of Stewart Avenue. Terminal Avenue is unsightly. Reduce to two lanes and plant trees in centre. Create proper bus stop areas (seating and standing areas, garbage cans). Create traffic circle at corner of Brechin/Departure Bay/Island Hwy. Convert dead ends in to green zone. Gateway on Brechin/Estevan for public art. Encourage programs for art. Better sidewalk/pavement along Ecole Oceane. Increased density to include housing options (seniors and low income). Murals to cover commercial building walls. Fruit trees. Discussion Three – Environment and Infrastructure 1) What are the specific areas of the neighbourhood that need environmental protection / restoration / enhancement? Why? Protection of trees, air quality as there is a major highway close-by. Remove diseased trees. Trees should be topped to preserve/enhance views. Deer problem. Northfield Creek needs a lot of work. Keep the waterfront clean. Along the rail and hwy. – garbage / run down. Stewart Avenue study area & Petro Can site. Clean up shipyards; cement plant air pollution; remove oil tanks. Protect heritage houses. Existing trees should also be protected and developers should be encouraged to include trees and green areas in their plans. Organic waste pickup. Garbage at fast food places is problem; need to clean up and maintain. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments 2) What is the availability and condition of parks and open space in your area? Is anything lacking? What do you think would improve it? Given that the homes are older and have yards with trees, green area, one gets a sense of the maintenance of the environment. Continuation of the sea-wall walkway along the waterfront, through the Stewart Avenue area turned into a waterfront park – would improve the lack of parks and green space in our area. Newcastle Neighbourhood itself doesn't have any parks. The available parks are the waterfront park off Stewart Avenue and Caledonia and Bowen Park across the railroad tracks. They are not easily accessible for pedestrians as they require crossing busy intersections. There are not enough pedestrian cross roads. On Terminal the one at Townsite is too far away from the parks. The one at Rosehill and Stewart Ave is not safe. The Newcastle area doesn't have any open space other than the area around White Spot etc. Beach Estates Park; galvanized walkway to be made out of wood again – natural – blends into area. Enhance Chinese Memorial Gardens. Not well served by public space; waterfront is biggest draw. Greater access to Newcastle Island. Barney Moriez Park needs more low growing trees on east end. 3) Think about how you move around in your neighbourhood. How would you like to see it improved? Where? Traffic calming (eg/ roundabouts, chicanes, local traffic only signs), road improvements, addition of sidewalks, bike lanes and street trees. Better pedestrian access across Terminal Avenue. Trees and boulevard concept along Vancouver Avenue, which is wide for a local street. No traffic bumps on Drake Street. Complete boardwalk along waterfront. St George Ravine Park needs to be opened up (walkways, lighting). Transit routes; transit to mall, VIU and hospital not great - no late runs, doesn’t consider students or those who can’t afford a car. Make Vancouver Avenue the pedestrian avenue through sidewalk & lighting improvements. Crosswalk on Rosehill crossing Stewart is on wrong side of Rosehill – dangerous. No left on to Townsite from the Highway between 3-6 pm. Too much heavy truck traffic on Terminal Avenue; use traffic calming methods. Encourage transportation link between ferry / bus / train / plane. Ferry line up must go. Access to downtown. Accesses opened up. Continuous waterfront walkway. Public bike service. Utilities underground. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Mapping Comments General Dog walk feature. More disposal cans for dog droppings. Future access to Departure Bay Malecon. Complete waterfront walkway from downtown to ferry terminal and beyond. Provide destination points along the boardwalk. Improved public transit, including ferry to downtown and back. Better connections from upland to waterfront. Sidewalks everywhere. Provide pedestrian access from residential areas to waterfront over Stewart Avenue. Public meeting space missing in this populated area. Tree lined Terminal Avenue. Speeding on Terminal. Street lighting and improved street signage. Encourage community gardens. Maintain single family, lower cost, smaller residences. No housing complexes greater than three to four storeys. Ferry traffic congestion. Better align traffic lights to sync. Snow removal. Commercial traffic uses residential streets Beach Estates Maintain small community feel in Beach Estates. Difficult to access green space. Access to Beach Estates from Brechin. Sealand / BC Ferries Area Needs more coffee shops, boutiques, benches, viewpoints. Hotel site. Turn area into a park. Increase residential development of waterfront. Commercial ferry traffic re-routed to Duke Point. Move BC Ferries out of neighbourhood and move batch plant to Duke Point or other industrial area. Farmers market or Granville Island style market at Sealand. Underutilized recreational land at Pimbury Point. Environmental clean up. Newcastle Channel / Island Environmental concern and safety. More housing along Newcastle Channel – mixed commercial and residential. Connection to Newcastle Island – link by boat. Retain marine activity and use; provide access for small boats, including small boat launch. Dragon boats terminal and launching facility. Nanaimo Yacht Club area – unique shops, small commercial, mixed use. Marine environment of neighbourhood good. No high rises on waterfront. Maximum three storeys on Stewart Avenue. Reroute truck traffic to Parkway (not Stewart). Community grocery store along Stewart (not convenience store). Garbage can on Stewart Ave at Petro Can ‘park’. Garbage cans along seawall. Access to water. Too many brightly lit, big signs on Stewart Avenue. NEWCASTLE + BRECHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES WORKSHOP 2009-NOV-10 Consolidated Workshop Comments Newcastle Area Pedestrian walkways between neighbourhood across Terminal and railway. Need access to Millstone (including bike route) at end of Mt Benson (crosswalk). Also safe access across Stewart. Plan for townhouses and parks instead of high rises. No more apartment blocks. Restore old houses as much as possible. Maintain/restore heritage homes on Vancouver Avenue and elsewhere. More trees and bike lane on Vancouver Avenue. No Corridor on Vancouver Avenue. Safe trail at bottom of Hemlock. Need access onto Townsite from highway (between 3pm and 6pm). Use Vancouver Ave for connector from ferry down Townsite. Drug dealing. Terminal Park Area Densify commercial, mixed use residential. Tall buildings must be placed on high ground. Highest buildings and densities here. Traffic light at St. George/Terminal does not change for bicycles. Street people hanging out behind Save On Foods. Estevan route to work to avoid ferry traffic. Brechin Hill Area Provide multi-use park on school property. Improve Terminal/Brechin Roads intersection. Close open ditches in Hawkins / Bayview area. More infill of single family homes. Barney Moriez Park – enhance park trees. Field needs better drainage. Add small community centre. Remove Petro-Can operations. Gas smell and noise. No condos at top of Chestnut Street. Large lot on Drake Street – opportunity for connector street between Brechin and Drake, or use as community garden, etc. All four-way stops and intersections from Poplar to Drake Street. Fill open ditches. No speed bumps on Drake. Walkway from Belford to St. George Street. Culvert at School – dark tunnel at night…bad. Street parking issues. Alley lighting.