What is a Feasibility Study?
A feasibility study is essentially a process for determining the viability of a proposed initiative or service and providing a framework and direction for its development and delivery. It is a process for making sound decisions and setting direction. It is also a process which: is driven by research and analysis usually involves some form of consultation with stakeholders, community, users, etc. focuses on analyzing, clarifying and resolving key issues and areas of concern or uncertainty very often involves basic modeling and testing of alternative concepts and approaches There is no universal format for a feasibility study. Feasibility studies can be adapted and shaped to meet the specific needs of any given situation. Council involvement. The following are more specific circumstances that may prompt the need for a feasibility study: significant capital investment is required significant City funding or public fundraising is required significant commitment or exclusivity of City land or building floor space and time is required there is no clear champion financial viability is in question (costs compared with anticipated revenues) community needs require further analysis and validation there is potential to reach a large market segment or affect a large number of people accessibility to the service is an issue (pricing barriers, physical barriers, discriminative social barriers, proximity, geographic equity, etc.) there is a perception of competition with existing service providers (commercial or community based) and the City’s mandate or role may be questioned there is no clear indication of the preferred method or source of delivery public safety is concerned there are significant legislative requirements (health, safety, liability, certification requirements) related to the initiative which concern, impact and relate to the City there is significant risk inherent in the service initiative (financial, political, public liability, social, etc) the initiative entails significant operating requirements (ie. financial, administrative, staffing, materials and supplies, skill development, customer service, training/ development, etc.)
When is a Feasibility Study Needed?
As outlined in the Leisure Services Policy, all new community leisure service initiatives or proposals which fall outside the Department’s current realm or scope of service provision are subject to two initial evaluations: the Community Needs Assessment and the Options Analysis. If the results of these evaluations are inconclusive or fail to establish clear direction, then a feasibility study may be required if it is felt that the proposed service merits further review. The requirement for a feasibility study will be at the discretion of the Parks & Recreation Department’s Management Team. Generally, if a proposed initiative has major political or financial implications to the City or has significant potential community impacts, then a feasibility study will be required. Declaring the need for a feasibility study also implies that the initiative will require some consultative process and
Leisure Services Policy
Any one of the above may point to the need for a feasibility study. The focus of all feasibility studies should always be placed on the need for service even if a proposed initiative involves major facility development that may be perceived as the final outcome or product. Facilities are a resource for accommodating community services and should be addressed within this context as part of the feasibility study.
determine the City’s role and impacts (financial, resources) in the delivery of the service produce an implementation strategy for the development and delivery of the new service The following summarizes typical contents of a feasibility study. The level of detail, analysis and involvement may vary depending on the nature and scale of the proposed initiative....