Despite one councillor’s concerns over an unequal distribution of city funds, Coquitlam council voted unanimously to spend $9.6 million on a new Burke Mountain school and park.
The money is earmarked for a $16.6 million site project including bulk excavation and retaining wall construction, according to a city staff report.
The city’s share of a $16.6 million project is meant to facilitate a new secondary school and park on a 23-acre site at David Avenue. School District #43 is set to own 61.5 percent of the land with the city owning the rest, approximately 8.9 acres.
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The city previously set aside $8.8 million for the project, including a $5-million community amenity contribution from Wesbild Holdings.
The additional $9.6 million accounts for more than half the cash in a city fund meant to serve all of Coquitlam, noted Coun. Dennis Marsden at the Sept. 11 meeting.
“It’s equivalent to the entire cost of the Maillardville Community Centre. It is a huge, huge shortfall,” Marsden said.
While the funding amount is disproportionate, the project is necessary, Marsden said.
“Really who should be funding it . . . is the owner of our schools: that’s our province.”
The city now has $9 million left in the fund.
Construction of the approximately $18.4 million park is set to start in April 2025.
The park is set to feature a 400-metre running track, an artificial turf field, four tennis courts, and about 60 parking spots.
Both the school and the park are set to be complete by September 2026.