A possible site for the new childcare centre is between the Seniors Activity Centre and the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex. (City of Williams Lake image)

A possible site for the new childcare centre is between the Seniors Activity Centre and the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex. (City of Williams Lake image)

City seeking input on proposed childcare facility in Williams Lake

Economic development officer urges interested community groups, public to contact her

Public input is being sought for a new, proposed 72-space childcare centre in Williams Lake that would provide before and after school care for children ages 6 to 12.

Williams Lake economic development officer Beth Veenkamp said the need for such a facility was recommended in the 2020 Williams Lake Child Care Needs Assessment and Action Plan consultation.

She is hoping the City can apply to the BC New Spaces Fund for the new centre, which provides up to $3 million.

With asssitance from Zirnhelt Timber Frame’s Sam Zirnhelt a conceptual plan and budget has been developed for a total cost of $2.88 million.

“In this kind of building, which is a single storey, there are a few things that keep the cost down,” Veenkamp said. “We wouldn’t require an elevator or a sprinkler system because of the configuration of the building and the amount of exits.”

The square footage cost would be about $325.

Veenkamp said the City’s contribution could be a parcel of City-owned property between the Williams Lake Seniors Activity Centre and the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex (CMRC) parking lot, resulting in the reduction of approximately 10 parking spaces at the CMRC parking lot and 15 at the Seniors Activity Centre.

“We thought that being next to the recreation centre providing additional opportunities to increase our programming was a good idea.”

Read more: Williams Lake families hurting from lack of available childcare spaces: Bond

City council liked the idea, but not everyone wanted that location.

Coun. Scott Nelson said the area was ‘seniors driven’ and thought a different location would be better.

Coun. Sheila Boehm agreed childcare is needed, but asked if there might be different location as well.

“I can see why you want it in the recreation centre parking lot, but maybe there is a different location in town somewhere and the public may have a great idea where,” Boehm said.

Mayor Walt Cobb said there is a parking lot near Marie Sharpe Elementary School, another empty lot across from a park, but if it could be shown that the Seniors Activity Centre’s parking lot could be reconfigured, it might work at the site Veenkamp was proposing.

Council agreed to engage the public on the merits of submitting an application to the BC New Spaces Fund, and directed staff to explore potential building sites and to consult with the Williams Lake Seniors Activity Centre, Williams Lake Farmers Market and community residents as well as make presenations to School District 27 and the Cariboo Regional District.

Read more: Williams Lake UBCM resolution calls for higher wages for early childhood educators


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

ChildcareWilliams Lake

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


The childcare centre would have 72 spaces. (City of Williams Lake image)

The childcare centre would have 72 spaces. (City of Williams Lake image)

Preliminary design concept was developed by Sam Zirnhelt of Zirhelt Timber Frames. (City of Williams Lake image)

Preliminary design concept was developed by Sam Zirnhelt of Zirhelt Timber Frames. (City of Williams Lake image)

Just Posted

Mayor Walt Cobb waves from atop a tractor as he turns onto Oliver Street in the Daybreak Rotary’s annual Stampede Parade. Patrick Davies photo.
Lack of funding, volunteers has Daybreak Rotary bowing out of Williams Lake Stampede parade

Club learned this week it won’t be receiving local government funding, for the second year in a row

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)
30 new COVID-19 cases, five more deaths in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases to 7,271 since testing began

Williams Lake’s Brock Hoyer films a segment of the newly-released The Way Home in the city of Revelstoke. (Ryen Dunford photo)
Brock Hoyer stars in new snowbike film: The Way Home

The film is completely free and was released on YouTube on Jan. 22, 2021

The body of Kenneth Seymour Michell was discovered Jan. 14, 2021, behind a Williams Lake business a day after he was released by a judge on conditions. (Photo submitted)
Family looks for answers after Indigenous man dies by suicide following release from custody

System does not care about Indigenous peoples, says First Nations Leadership Council

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Interior Health officially declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Creekside Landing in Vernon on Jan. 3, which was followed by the first death from the virus 10 days later. (Kaigo photo)
COVID outbreak over at Vernon care home

Creekside Landing cleared of coronavirus, despite additional death in last day

(Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. residents can reserve provincial camp sites starting March 8

B.C. residents get priority access to camping reservations in province

Two women were arrested in Nanaimo for refusing to wear masks and causing disturbance on a BC Ferries vessel. (File photo)
B.C. ferry passengers arrested and fined for disturbance, refusing to wear masks

Police said woman threatened their pensions in Feb. 21 incident aboard Nanaimo-bound boat

Most Read