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RFP--Recreation Master Plan

The Town of South Bruce Peninsula is interested in receiving responses from qualified
consultants for the undertaking of a Recreation Master Plan.

Excerpt from the Complete RFP follows.

2.1    Purpose

In response to increasing community demands and in an effort to position the Town so that it can address demands, the Town is undertaking a process to complete a Strategic Master Plan for the provision of parks and recreation services.  This study will combine a strategic planning approach where core directional statements are identified to guide decision making with a "Master Plan".

The Town of South Bruce Peninsula Public Works department is seeking proposals from qualified multi-disciplinary consultants to meet several objectives.  The major goal for the consultant is to develop, design and produce a fiscally responsible Strategic Master Plan for the delivery of parks and recreation services.

The Master Plan will define user "needs" and identify what the Town should consider providing; including the level of service standards for leisure facilities, where facilities should be located, when they will be required, their costs, and how they should be funded to ensure the ability to finance is addressed.

In addition, the Master Plan will also reflect the current and future recreational and park needs of the Town.  It should be recognized by the consultant that the Plan will not be static and needs to have methods for monitoring and review adjustments incorporated into it.

The Town of South Bruce Peninsula is an active and flourishing community where parks, recreation and leisure services and facilities are a vital component of the Town's commitment to health, active lifestyles and quality living.  To this end, parks, recreation and leisure services and facilities have enhanced the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of the Town.

The Town, with one arena, one community centre, four community halls, one outdoor pool, two outdoor tennis courts, numerous active/passive parks and open spaces, and a Blue Flag designated beach, is not only committed to its role as a direct service provider, but also endeavors to facilitate and support community partners in delivery of their programs and services.

The Town of South Bruce Peninsula, like other communities across Ontario, has experienced considerable change in the past number of years.  This has resulted in a fundamental need to address the planning and delivery of parks, recreation and leisure services in the Town.  This "need" has been accelerated due to increasing consumer demands for new and better programs, services and facilities.

2.2     Master Plan Review and Update - Goals and Objectives

The purpose of this study is to recommend a specific plan of action of the planning and delivery of recreation and parks services in the Town of South Bruce Peninsula for two periods of time:  immediate action (1-5 years), and a long term plan (5-10 years).

Key issues to be addressed and project requirements of the respondent include:

  • Review of existing documents for analysis and evaluation of report recommendations that require completion and further consideration
  • Review and analyze current department service levels relative to existing financial and human resource allocations and make recommendations for building upon existing resources and addressing gaps in service provision
  • Determine parks and recreation facility trends that will fundamentally affect leisure services for a ten year period.  In consultation with community stakeholders in sports and recreation and conduct a needs assessment to develop a plan of action to meet the needs of the community and to list these in priority of need
  • Review and analyze all documents relative to planning and population growth in the Town of South Bruce Peninsula for the next ten years.  Based upon this assessment, development recommendations and an implementation schedule for department activity in the following areas:RECREATION SERVICES DELIVERY SYSTEM, RECREATION PROGRAMS, RECREATION FACILITIES, PARKS, OPEN SPACE AND TRAIL SYSTEMS
  • Prepare a financial plan for both capital and operating costs associated with the forecasted initiatives by prioritizing the expenditures based on existing financial and human resources as they currently exist, and allowances made for changing demographics including increases in population.  It is important that the priority listing of expenditures which reflects the priority level of service the community expects.

Service Priority Determination

Requests are received for a variety of recreation services, including but not limited to programs, facilities and parks.  A critical assessment of the types of municipal services and facilities that ate required in order to address public need as well as related policy guidelines to prioritize these requests is necessary.

The Town has a number of aging leisure and recreational facilities which, although previously popular, have been experiencing a decline in participation.  Service levels for providing these facilities, given present and anticipated trends including service capacity, need to be determined.

Today more than ever, market research and consumer preference are shaping facility design and program delivery.  As a result, it is critical to have a complete understanding of the customers needs in order to better anticipate and satisfy community leisure demands as they relate to both programs and facility development and redevelopment.

The emerging focus of a multi-use approach to facility and service delivery requires a fundamental and comprehensive re-examination of leisure service delivery, facilities, community partners such as libraries and schools, other compatible municipal uses, fiscal components, and the role of community development.

Funding Opportunities

Changes in the funding capacity of the Provincial and Federal governments impact our ability to fund new facilities and this may also impact a number of nonprofit leisure service delivery agencies in the community.

2.3    Scope of the Study

It is expected that the consultant will:

  • Develop a Parks and Recreation Strategic Master Plan.  The purpose of the plan is to guide the Public Works department in the next three, five, and ten year periods in the area of recreation and leisure services, facility development and management, and administration of the parks and recreation function.
  • To undertake a comprehensive public consultation process to solicit input into future leisure service requirements in the community
  • Review existing studies and information previously undertaken
  • Consult with key stakeholders to develop specific leisure service requirements
  • Develop a strategy for the provision of all classifications of recreational land use and open space to meet current and future needs, including the specific issue of urban waterfront areas
  • Identify indicators emerging which will impact future program planning and service development based on demographics and trends
  • Investigate potential alternate service delivery options in specific geographic, age specific, or activity specific areas
  • Analyze and evaluate current levels of service to identify core levels of service and to benchmark those services for future delivery, identifying any impact that would change in the delivery and levels of service provided, including the allocation of Town resources to community groups and boards
  • Develop a framework to determine the feasibility for the provision of new facilities when community need warrants or special requests are received
  • Meet with respective committees, elected officials and other staff to gather additional information as required
  • Develop and conduct public consultation with various community representatives to solicit input and evaluation of Strategic Plan initiatives without raising unrealistic expectations
  • Prepare draft copy of the Strategic Plan for presentation and review by the Project Management Steering Committee and the municipal Council
  • Present approved draft copy to Committee of the Whole
  • Present final document to Council

The consultant will ensure that all approaches are comprehensive and will liaise with Town departments and Council as required to complete the project.  The consultant will work with the Project Management Steering Committee to determine function and format of the new Strategic Master Plan document.

2.4    Study Details

The preferred respondent will address the following components in order to complete the objectives as stated above:


  • Intent of goals and objectives
  • Study methods including the public participation process and indicate number of proposed public meetings anticipated to secure public input

Identification and Review of Background Information

  • Facilities inventory including public (municipal, school board, Conservation Authority, Provincial Parks) and private (clubs, golf courses, fitness clubs) both indoor and outdoor.  Staff to provide support under direction of consultant
  • Current level of service standards
  • Policies and guidelines
  • Capital and operating budgets and funding sources
  • Reference documents

Community Profile

  • Use Bruce county and Town of South Bruce Peninsula population projections and recent demographic statistics to analyze trends both on a Town wide and neighbourhood - planning area basis.

Environmental Scan

  • The current scope of parks, recreation and leisure services and facilities in the Town 

Strategic Guiding Principles

  • Identification, with key stakeholders, of core directional statements for the development of policy guidelines

Public Consultation

  • Consultation with key stakeholders to determine needs, preferences, perceived gaps in service, emerging issues including but not limited to community organizations, users of facilities and programs, staff and Council
  • Consultation with the public at large to determine leisure market needs and preferences, perception of current leisure services and facilities, and perceived gaps in service
  • Consultation with the County of Bruce Planning Department to determine future trends and preferred geographic locations for development based on water and sanitary sewer limitations and current development standards

Recreation and Leisure Service Delivery

  • Identify Provincial, regionally and local trends and their applicability to the provision of leisure services in the Town over the next three, five and ten years
  • Assess each major program area including but not limited to community programs, aquatics, community sports, seniors, special needs, children, youth, and adult programming and determine strengths, weaknesses and service deficiencies as related to demographics and trends
  • Assess and identify the role for community associations, nonprofit and commercial service providers to determine the best mix of services to meet public need, both on a neighbourhood and Town wide basis
  • Assess and identify the role of the Town is the support and delivery of culture and heritage services and determine the most effective service linkages to other divisions, departments and boards within the Town 
  • Review current delivery system of culture and heritage programs and services and determine feasibility of formalizing these programs and service into the Town organizational structure and discussion on duplication within the Town
  • Assess and identify the role of the Town in supporting community development
  • Establish levels of service standards based on analysis of the information above
  • Assess level of our service compared to similar sized municipalities

Recreation and Leisure Facilities

  • Establish new or validate existing standards and categories for the number and type of facilities per capita by including new and emerging trends, multi-use facility considerations, demographic and identified and countrified service needs such as community centres and libraries
  • Identify current deficiencies based upon level of service standards
  • Establish benchmark standards related to scope of facility by various categories
  • Identify cost effective facility conversion options related to underutilized facilities and identified service needs
  • Establish new or validate existing criteria including geographic criteria for the acquisition of land for development of future facilities identified in the Strategic Master Plan

Parks and Open Space

  • Establish criteria and operational model for the delivery of park services on active playing fields
  • Establish level of service standards for parks, open spaces, parkettes, urban landscaping and waterfront properties based upon a parks and open space hierarchy, demographics, and location criteria
  • Identify current deficiencies based upon level of service standards
  • Develop required policies and standards for the provision of parks and open spaces based upon the recommendations of the Strategic Master Plan
  • Develop policies and standards for the integration of open space, environmentally significant areas and woodlands into the Strategic Master Plan including opportunities for recreational use
  • Establish criteria, including geographic criteria, for acquisition of land for parks, open space and waterfront properties to meet active and passive recreational needs through the development process
  • Develop criteria for utilization and acquisition of ecologically significant areas, woodlands and other components of the natural heritage system for integration with the current parks and open space system for integration with the current parks and open space system with other agencies such as Conservation Authorities, land trusts, County forests, and the Ministry of Natural Resources
  • Review Planning Act opportunities for acquiring parkland and establish a hierarchy of parks and open spaces

Financial Components

  • Review Town policies in setting park and recreation reserve funds and any other funds as required
  • Outline a long term financing strategy for new facility construction and or facility revitalization
  • Review current service delivery compared with costs to administer, and comment on whether this funding allocation falls within the average of similar sized municipalities that offer similar service delivery
  • Establish financing that will be required to deal with the service standards for parks, open spaces, parkettes, urban landscaping, and waterfront properties


  • Develop a multi-year, phases strategy for the provision of parks and recreation services and facilities based upon the findings of the Strategic Master Plan including financial considerations and prioritized cost implementation
  • Develop policies, procedures and guidelines for the implementation, general progress, and updating of the Strategic Master Plan
  • Review County Official Plan and Town Official Plan to ensure both of the Official Plans and the Strategic Master Plan are consistent with each other

Final Product
A final report is required in electronic form, PDF Word format, and hard copy (25) format addressing all aspects of the study details including recommendations as outlined in Section 2.7 Study Details.

The report should encompass a ten year period with progress levels outlined in three, five and ten year intervals.  The report shall be complete with Table of Contents, indexing, mapping where applicable, charts and or graphs where appropriate, capital budget forecasting, detailed facility and resource inventory, and all necessary appendices.

The final report should also speak to a public communications strategy and a process for monitoring, evaluating, and updating the Strategic Master Plan including a project specific web site which can be assessed by the community for updates and progress on the Strategic Master Plan.

The preferred respondent will also be required to present the report and its findings and recommendation to the public and Town Council.

The goal for the consultant is to develop, design and produce a fiscally responsible Strategic Master Plan document for the provision of leisure services and facilities in the Town.  The plan will also define user needs and identify what the Town should be providing including level of service standards for leisure services and facilities, where facilities should be located, when they will be required, their costs, and how they should be funded to ensure the ability to finance the level of service addressed.

2.5    Timing of the Study

It is expected that the study will commence in 2007 and will be complete no later than end of December, 2007."

[excerpt ends]

The complete RFP can be read online at

We would appreciate receiving your submission to this RFP for review by the Town before Friday, March 23, 2007.

Please be advised that the Council will determine if they will proceed with this project,
based upon appropriate funding in the 2007 Municipal Budget.