We have reached a major milestone in our city – acquiring the Robert Bateman High School site not only preserves it as the largest community centre in Burlington, but it also reaffirms our commitment to expand the number of community centres for our growing city.
The decision to direct City staff to take all the necessary steps to complete this acquisition and the land exchange and lease transaction proposals was a unanimous one at Council and I want to thank my Council colleagues for their support in this endeavour.
We know the community has been waiting for this news. The support from residents for the City working to retain this site as a community hub and park space has been overwhelmingly positive, and we thank our residents for that support.
We have preserved this area and protected it from other uses, such as a potential high-rise development. We need more community centres to meet the increasing needs of our growing communities to ensure everyone who lives in Burlington has access to amenities that enhance the quality of life in our city.
This acquisition also pushes forward some of the key objectives laid out in the City of Burlington’s 25-year strategic plan, including making Burlington a city that grows by attracting talent, good jobs and economic opportunities to the community.
Our partnerships with the Halton District School Board, Brock University, Burlington Public Library, and Burlington Economic Development ensures multiple uses and offerings for this site, including a university satellite campus, an expanded Appleby library branch and a relocated TechPlace where the tech community can connect, develop and grow their businesses.
I look forward to the next steps in this new community centre coming to life, including engaging our community for their feedback in 2023 on possible uses for the remaining available spaces left on the site.
Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward
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*Please see below a news release issued by the City of Burlington for more details.
City of Burlington completes deal to purchase Robert Bateman High School
Burlington, Ont. — Nov. 1, 2022 — The City has completed a purchase agreement and land exchange transaction with the Halton District School Board (HDSB) involving the Robert Bateman High School property. In the agreement, the City purchased the Bateman property for $29.6 million, while the HDSB purchased a City-owned property near Burlington Central High School that includes the high school football field and running track, for $21.7 million. The difference in price of $7.9 million will be debt financed, with annual debt payments recovered from the City’s capital reserve funds.
This acquisition would push forward key objectives laid out in the City of Burlington’s 25-year strategic plan. Key pillars of this Plan include making Burlington a City that grows through attracting talent, good jobs and economic opportunity to the community.
Within the Bateman space, the HDSB will retain a long-term interest at the school to accommodate the Gary Allan Learning Centre. And as previously announced, Brock University will offer their Teachers Education and Applied Disabilities Studies Programs and will be developing professional and continuing studies specifically to the needs of Burlington.
In addition to the partnership with the HDSB and Brock University, the City has partnered with other institutions, ensuring that there is an adaptive reuse strategy for the Bateman site and to create a sustainable community hub that will include community rooms, a triple gym and the existing City pool. The Burlington Public Library will relocate its Appleby Line branch to this location to develop a place for learning and education and the relocation of TechPlace, a hub led by Burlington Economic Development, where the tech community can connect, develop and grow their business.
Public engagement will take place in early 2023 to seek community feedback on possible uses for the remaining space.
- In June 2021, HDSB trustees approved a plan to declare the former Robert Bateman High School facility surplus to its needs and retain an interest in a portion of the facility to relocate the Burlington Gary Allan Learning Centre.
- In June 2021, the City of Burlington announced that an expression of interest would be submitted to the HDSB to purchase the Robert Bateman site through a partnership with Brock University.
- In December 2021, Council provided direction to staff to submit a formal offer to purchase the Robert Bateman High School site.
- In Feb. 2022, the HDSB accepted the City’s offer to purchase the Robert Bateman High School site.
- On Feb. 3, 2022, Burlington City Council endorsed next steps to advance the potential acquisition of the Robert Bateman High School site from the HDSB.
RELATED LINKS & RESOURCES:
- Burlington City Council Unanimously Gives Staff ‘Go Ahead’ to Purchase Robert Bateman High School Site
- Mayor’s Monday Mailbag – Oct. 17, 2022 – Is There An Update on the Purchase of Robert Bateman H.S.?
- Get Involved project page
- Staff Report – Public Engagement on Robert Bateman Proposals (L-22-22) – May 17, 2022
- Staff Report – Public engagement update on Robert Bateman High School land related proposals (CM-17-22) – June 6, 2022
- Staff presentation regarding Robert Bateman High School surplus school site update (CM-26-21) – Nov. 15, 2021
- Robert Bateman Building – Preliminary Design, Environmental, Architectural and Engineering Services (EICS-20-21) – Dec. 14, 2021
- Government of Ontario Regulation on Surplus School Property
- Media Release – City of Burlington to submit expression of interest to purchase surplus Bateman High School site – Jun. 24, 2021
- Media Release – City Council approves next steps for potential purchase of Robert Bateman High School site – Feb. 7, 2022
- Media Release – City of Burlington to host public meeting on Robert Bateman High School proposals – May 26, 2022