By Greg Price
After months on consultation with the public and gathering of data, the planned Recreation Master Plan will unveil its next stage with an open house on March 2 at the Taber Community Centre Auditorium at 7:15 p.m.
“There will be a brief presentation and an overview of the process and the plan,” said Greg Birch, CAO for the Town of Taber.
The process began in December 2014, which has included two public workshops and two surveys that were issued in gathering the wishlist of priorities of where Taber residents would like to see their recreation planning go in the foreseeable future.
“What we gleamed from the workshops and the surveys was a sense of priorities coming from the community. This is what the document hones in on the end from the four public engagement sessions,” said Birch. “Now, the recreation board and council can say ‘we know what the public’s priorities are, how are we going to put those priorities into action?’ That’s going to mean money.”
Administration is keeping the results of their findings close to the chest until the unveiling on March 2, but Birch revealed there was a pretty clear ranking of what people wanted in the community.
“The other part that came out of this that was very beneficial to us was the refinement from the first workshop we held to the second workshop and survey,” said Birch. “We asked the big questions in the first workshop and survey, like with our existing facilities, which ones do you think we should upgrade? You can say ice arena, but what does that mean? More comfortable seating? Brighter lights? Better sound system? It applies to all the facilities where the second survey and workshop, we honed in on that where they are saying X, Y and Z.”
For the workshops, discussions at earlier recreation board meetings were made to keep it at two people per recreational pursuit so that input and conversation was not dominated by one special interest group, so that as many different recreational pursuits could have their voices heard for input into the drafting of a recreational master plan.
The March 2 meeting is not a workshop, but rather an unveiling of the findings of the previous workshops and surveys.
“We are encouraging one and all to come out to this that has an interest,” said Aline Holmen, recreation director for the Town of Taber.