Following a well-attended public information session conducted on Thursday October 29, a formal Request for Information (RFI) has now been issued by the Commission. The purpose of the RFI is to both provide and gather information to determine third party interest in NPC’s marina plans to provide a water-based destination that would strengthen the visitor and tourist experience along the South Niagara Parkway.
The RFI will gather information on three enhancement scenarios envisioned by the Commission:
• Scenario A – Seeks to rehabilitate the current marina amenities through a multi-phased plan that is operated by a third party;
• Scenario B – Envisions the maximization of boating recreation at the site with a new high quality marina facility that meets market potential in quantity, capacity and revenue, while also providing significant publicly-accessible activities (pier, fishing as an example) and amenities (food and beverage) through a third party capital investment and operation;
• Scenario C – Builds on the marina facility of Scenario B and is also augmented by additional marina and public shoreline area enhancements, which integrate the entire NPC lands assembled as part of the project, to create a recreational resort through third party capital investments and operation;
Respondent submissions may address more than one scenario and propose an alternate enhancement, so long as it is in alignment with the project principles and Commission objectives that any future marina redevelopment: maximize water-based recreation and related amenities; enhance public access and activities along the Niagara River shoreline; conform to planning policy and regulations by following good planning principles; and ensure NPC’s financial sustainability, all while providing community benefit.
The RFI will: determine the corporate interest to undertake one of the scenarios; gain understanding of the skill sets of respondents and help inform NPC’s decision process to advance a preferred scenario. Those corporations interested in obtaining the RFI can do so at http://www.niagaraparks.com.
On Thursday, October 29, 2015, NPC held a public information session at Old Fort Erie to receive input on these three proposed scenarios. The agenda for the evening included a presentation and opportunity for break out discussion groups. Feedback from this community consultation, combined with that received from the RFI will then help guide NPC in its decision towards a preferred enhancement scenario that will be shared with the public in February 2016.
As the RFI is only to gather information at this time, it is anticipated that a future Request for Qualification and Request for Proposals will be issued by NPC in 2016, to advance a preferred scenario.
Ultimately, NPC’s vision for the marina and its associated lands, is to create a regionally unique, recreation destination, which is appropriate to the Parkway and its historical river setting. This vision is based on the establishment of an exceptional public marina facility that will be developed in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner. It will also provide easy and convenient access to all the attractions along the Niagara Parkway.
This destination facility will: reinforce The Niagara Parks Commission brand; maintain the pre-eminence of the Niagara Parkway; serve the boating and recreational community across the international Niagara region; and, ensure a great experience for all patrons, tourists and visitors.