Community Hub - 950 Kings

One pressing neighbourhood priority is the remaining 3.5 acres of the former Blanshard Elementary School.  Owned by regional interests, the Capital Regional Hospital District, has tentatively planned to build mixed market housing and another residential health facility right next to Evergreen Terrace (the largest concentrated low income housing complex in Greater Victoria) and the (under construction) Summit at Quadra Village (a complex care, residential hospital replacing Mt.Tolmie Care Hospital and Oak Bay Lodge).  These planned developments can in no way fill the neighbourhood-accessible, community building potential of a 7 acre school campus that was critical to the urban renewal planning that was intiated in the 1960s. 

Fast forward to 2019 and time is ticking on the future of this critical area of Hillside-Quadra/Quadra Village.  The Downtown Blanshard Advisory Committee (the neighbourhood association for Hillside-Quadra) has put forward a proposal that underlines the feedback that was shared through consultations/meetings with the Healthy Neighbourhood Group, consultations connected to the Summit at Quadra Village, feedback from neighbours about childcare and assessment of Community Centre needs that would help the neighbourhood (excerpted from December 2018 letter to Mayor and Council):

"When the school closed the site became increasingly unavailable to local residents, peaking with the purchase and planning of the Summit of Quadra Village.  Boredom amongst tweens/youth and a lack of access to reasonable playspaces became visible in the neighbourhood. While the use of the (now named) Quadra Village Community Gym has been a good first step towards community access to the remaining 3.5 acre parcel of the school building and property the City has a unique opportunity to purchase 950 Kings and with it a future that could include:

-green space accessible to residents

-Community Centre operated amenities such as the Quadra Village Neighbourhood Gym, daycare and other community program space

-potential for a Library Branch on the scale of the new Emily Carr (Uptown) branch or the Goudy branch (Langford)...

...By purchasing 950 Kings, the City of Victoria would be investing in enhancement of a vulnerable neighbourhood through access to green space and valuable community services."

Please consider writing the City of Victoria's Mayor and Council at councillors@victoria.ca to request the purchase of 950 Kings.  

 

Click the links below to read news articles on the matter: 

Times Colonist "Our Community: Former Blanshard Elementary School eyed as community hub"

CBC "Back to school? Victoria councillor says old school could be key to expanding community centre" 

Victoria News  "VIDEO: Hillside-Quadra residents rally for new community space"