The provincial government has unveiled their plans to revitalize a portion of the east side of Toronto’s Ontario Place.

Tourism Minister Michael Chan announced Wednesday that a 7.5-acre urban park and waterfront trail will replace what is currently a parking lot.

He hopes that parts of the park will be completed before the start of the Pan AM and Parapan Am games in 2015. A full completion of the park and waterfront trail is expected in 2017.

Chan wants the builder selected this year and for construction to get underway by 2014.

When faced with questions about the budget, Chan would not disclose the estimated cost saying he didn’t want to influence the bidding process.

“I want to find the best value for the park,” Chan told reporters.

During the Wednesday morning news conference, Chan received sharp criticism from reporters about the timeline of the construction, the lack of budget, and even the significance of the announcement.

“There’s been a lot of talk, so many studies and consultations. Today, the significance is a real stand of moving forward.” Chan responded.

“A place for Ontarians, one that is free, one that is accessible and one that is sustainable,” he added.

Chan said he hopes for a full completion in 2017 to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation.

Ontario Place has been partially closed since February of last year, with the Ontario Place Marina, the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre, Echo Beach and Atlantis Pavilion still operating.

In June, the Ontario government announced there will be no casino at the property, which some were pushing for in order to revitalize Toronto’s underutilized waterfront.

“A casino is definitely not happening at this location,” confirmed Chan.

In a report prepared by John Tory, former Ontario Progressive Conservative leader, nearly a year ago, he suggested the site become a year-round park with residential buildings and commercial space.

A competition will be held in July to determine the landscape architect for the urban park and waterfront trail.

There is still no clear plan for the rest of the 96-acre property.

With files from CTV Toronto’s John Musselman