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STREET, PENTICTON, BC
Moderator: Donna Lomas Mitch Moroziuk, Director of Operations Ian Chapman, City Engineer Mayor Ashton Councillor Hopkin Councillor Jakubeit Councillor Konanz Councillor Litke Councillor Sentes Councillor Vassilaki Rod King, Waterfront Enhancement Select Committee Chair
Lorraine Williston, Recording Secretary
WELCOME Mitch Moroziuk opened the meeting at 6:00 p.m. and welcomed and thanked everyone for attending. Members of Council and Panel were introduced. The format for the evening was presented.
OPENING REMARKS Mayor Dan Ashton welcomed everyone and briefed the audience on how we have arrived at this point and the purpose for this meeting regarding the proposed waterfront improvement concepts. Mayor Ashton also stated the waterfront is a community asset and it is important for this project to reflect that as much as possible. Mayor Ashton clarified to the audience that the City of Penticton does not have the $7.1 million for improvements. What everyone needs to understand is that there is a $1.2 million gas tax grant available from the Provincial Government. This grant must be used for a capital environmental project and if we don’t do the project, we will give up that $1.2 million. Mayor Ashton strongly encouraged and invited the public to voice their opinions during the public comment period. Mayor Ashton then introduced Donna Lomas, the Moderator for the evening.
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MODERATOR, HOUSEKEEPING RULES Donna Lomas gave an overview of the procedures and process for anyone wishing to speak. Information on how to send in written submissions to the City of Penticton after the meeting was provided.
PRESENTATION OF CONCEPTS Ian Chapman welcomed everyone and presented an overview of the concepts that were conceived from public feedback over the past months as follows: Concept 1 Remains a two-way street Five-metre multi-use path. Wider walkway to allow for use by cyclists and people with mobility challenges Angle parking would be eliminated and parallel parking added Additional parking added on Power Street and Riverside Drive S.S. Sicamous Plaza displaces roundabout – roundabout would be moved to Riverside Drive. Inland Marine Heritage Park improvements Includes boat day moorage Washroom facility Programmable area (to be used for events etc.) Pedestrian crosswalks become raised crosswalks – benefit of raised crosswalks: slows traffic and safer for pedestrians Additional features added: sun shades, benches, picnic tables Power Street Tree lined boulevard Raised crossing Plaza on beach side with public art Mobility challenged access path to beach and water Increased vendor opportunities Pine trees would be saved and areas would be improved to preserve trees with walkways to be built around trees Peach Plaza walkway upgraded to connect with Kiwanis Pier An overwater boardwalk is provided west of the Peach Existing well treed area to be retained and enhanced by moving walkway onto water and creating a boardwalk Green area would be extended for potential picnic areas
Concept 2 – (Variations from 1) One-way traffic in west direction from Peach Plaza to Power Street Power Street would be deflected slightly to south for one-way meeting up with two-way traffic flow Feature rich at Power Street – larger plaza Varied parking (angle and parallel) With boardwalk, can maintain existing 55 angle parking stalls Flex parking only on South side Substantial increase to green area Reconstruction of waterfront area by S.S. Sicamous
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Concept 3 Least amount of features Resurfacing of existing walkway at beach level to lane at Churchill Avenue Existing retaining wall and curb remains Minor improvements to walkways to smooth out the curves Walkways raised to street level for easier access at Power Street No fancy plaza Enhanced parking areas for the mobility challenged Mobility challenged access path to beach and water Picnic areas on walkway Slight deflection around some trees to preserve them Walkway by Peach would be widened and repaved with a special permeable material Corner area by Peach would be expanded by filling in corner section with concrete 2 pedestrian crossings reduced creating additional parking
Concept 4 Improved walkway – consistent 3m wide at or near road level along all of waterfront West end Walkway would be raised and trees would have to be removed New trees planted Power Street Walkway improved similar to Concept 3 Trees would be preserved Walkway at road level except for Pines diversion Would displace angle parking in this area and could be replaced by parallel parking Crosswalk would need to be relocated Option to add more picnic areas Peach Plaza Plaza similar to Concept 3 Boardwalk added over water and reconnected with existing walkway Trees that are removed are removed are replaced at a ratio of 1 removed, 2 replaced Bumps in Lakawana Park would also be removed
# Trees removed # Trees added Net tree change # Angle parking stalls removed # Parallel/car park stalls added # Angle parking stalls added Total Angle parking Total non-angle spaces Net parking change
Concept 1 -1 133 +132 -232 232 (113+119) 0 0 232 0
Concept 2 -4 154 +150 -177 177 (71 + 106) 0 55 177 0
Concept 3 -2 8 +6 -2 0 5 235 0 +3
Concept 4 -19 38 +19 -30 7 0 202 7 -23
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In conclusion, Ian Chapman stated that many of the features in each concept are interchangeable.
PUBLIC COMMENT AND QUESTION PERIOD Speaker 1 – Vic Powell Against Concept 1; There are more important areas that have been neglected that warrant work like the weeds on Riverside Drive and other areas around the city; Catch basins need cleaning; and Certain city roads require attention right now.
Speaker 2 – Gillian Waterman Bikes should not be allowed on paths; Don’t change what doesn’t need changing; Maintenance yes, but no to change; Library needs work; and Funds should be used to bring in decent paying jobs.
Speaker 3 – Jim Hewitt Angle parking must be maintained. Current parking allows for the greatest number of people accessing the beach. Safer for families; Walkways should not be used for bikes or skateboarders; Keep it a 2-way street. One way would result in congestion on Power Street; Do not encroach onto beach; Expand current walkway by straightening it. Do not replace brick with asphalt or concrete. If it were concrete, it would become a skateboarder roadway; Only remove trees to allow for widening. Replace removed trees with other trees for shade; Level the lumps at Lakawana Park and add picnic tables with easy access to washrooms and concession; Maintenance should be done on bricks twice a week during the summer months to remove sand and debris; Expanded walkway and safety of children should not be compromised; No parking should be sacrificed; More ramps could be added; Curbs should be higher is some sections; Add more grass and picnic tables by Peach; and Supports Concept 3.
Speaker 4 – Del Muzzillo Commended City and Committee Members for their time and hard work on this project; Process is very valid and important; Need to be careful not to put the cart before the horse; In a resort municipality, there is a vision plan that forms a master plan from which priorities will form;
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There has not been a vision plan. What is the future of Penticton and what type of community do we want? World Class? Retirement? Hybrid of all? Waterfront is a priority. Need to do the best possible and look at the future and what we will proud of in the future.
Speaker 5 – Monica Hoffmann Thanked the public for all their input; In favour of Concept 3 or 4; Would like to see more bike paths; Do not remove angle parking and keep parking free for those low income residents; and Against Concepts 1 & 2.
Speaker 6 – Pat Styles Asked panel to base decisions on personal experiences at the beach; In favour of keeping two-way traffic and angle parking; Concerned raised walkway will be unsafe for little kids running onto the road; and Not opposed to changing the walkways.
Speaker 7 – Jay Lindsey Need mission statement and master plan; City does not have a consistent identity; Need to re-brand Website’s theme ‘Wine Country..Time to Breathe’; Brand suggested ‘Where the Sky Meets Innovation’; and Need sign by entrance to waterfront with our brand.
Speaker 8 – Loraine Stephanson Enjoys the angle parking and being able to park at the beach; In favour of a cycling and walking pathway and would be willing to sacrifice parking stalls for it; Directing cyclists onto Churchill Avenue is not a safe option; Preservation of current convenient parking and traffic flow as proposed in the new options does not reflect ‘sustainability’ as mentioned in the City’s Vision statement; Day moorage and other commercial options should be dropped from all proposals until there is a separate community discussion resolves how we value and protect our marine heritage site; and S.S. Sicamous Board does not want to see it commercialized.
Speaker 9 – Cal Meiklejohn Expressed special thanks to Council, Staff, the Waterfront Committee and it’s Chair, Rod King; Believes there is a ton of opportunity here and this is a good process; Amount of cost is not the point, it’s how you get there; Agrees there should be an overall master plan; Should leave the two-way traffic and angle parking the way it is; Identify trees worth keeping and plant five trees for every one you remove; and Where retaining wall and path is, expand green space.
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Speaker 10 – Colleen Tarr Major concerns are with the proposed boardwalk and boat moorage by the S.S. Sicamous; Boat moorage this summer has changed the culture of that part of the beach. So many families use that area it is not safe. Boats speeding, increased waves and the odor of gasoline; Requests no moorage at the S.S. Sicamous; Suggested contacting the Lakeside Resort to ask about utilizing their boat day moorage area for the public; and Would like to see more picnic tables.
Speaker 11 – Denis O’Gorman Agrees with Council’s decision to identify the waterfront as a strategic priority; In terms of ‘Saving Lakeshore Drive’, supports Concept 2 because: Enhances tree plantings and their chance of success; Enhances cycling safety, the cycling experience and system; Brings walkways up to standard; Increases shade trees; Leaves angle parking around the elms; and Supports the City’s vision of being innovative, adventurous and sustainable. Recommends the following variants for Concept 2: Openly addressing a full one way option; Relocating the day moorage near the S.S. Sicamous; Remove the expensive proposed boardwalk near the S.S. Sicamous; Clarifying the Sicamous area in investment objectives; Reducing the ‘compass’ plaza and instead add significant green space there; Add an enhanced tree growth area for the cottonwoods area, similar to that proposed for the pines; and Reduce or defer the number of plazas and shade structures. Enhancements can be phased to make them financially feasible; and Encourages Council to stick the City’s vision and support Concept 2.
Speaker 12 – Clifford Martin Commented on the uniqueness of our beach; Change could be detrimental; Against removing angle parking. Parallel parking does not favour families; Having the classic car show is a tourist attraction; and You will not find another place like Okanagan Lake so why would you change it.
Speaker 13 – Edna Hugo Emphatic that we leave Lakeshore Drive alone; Agreed walkway can be added to or widened where needed but does feel current width is adequate; Does not agree with removing trees, only the trees that are considered dangerous and stated some can be pruned; Replace any trees you remove; and Supports Concept 3 – make improvements and leave as is.
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Speaker 14 – Jeff Leonard Commends Council and Committee with trying to improve this area considering the demographics of our residents; Another option would be to spend the amount of the grant only; Keep the walkways the way they are now, which are in the sand; and Should have more cultural areas in the city. Do not make the Sicamous area commercial – keep cultural.
Speaker 15 – Jake Kimberley Stated a waterfront study was done in the 90’s and should be referred to as study has addressed many of the same issues; One-way traffic does not work as it creates a raceway around Churchill Avenue; Parallel parking does not work. Becomes a dangerous parking system when you have children exiting into traffic and between cars. Children are not easily seen by motorists; Should restrict vehicle size for angle parking. Larger motorhomes and vehicles are a major problem; Questioned whether the Federal Government has been contacted and advised of any plans as they have the rights on the waterway; Need to recognize the riparian setbacks; Sicamous moorage requires dredging; Costs associated are overdone; In agreement the retaining wall is in bad condition. Suggested recovering of wall would be appropriate; Suggested moving retaining wall into lake to accommodate a bicycle path; A bicycle path is valuable; and No to parking meters. Do not restrict access to that area with meters.
Speaker 16 – Gerry Gilligan Does not agree with day moorage; Also suggested contacting the Lakeside Resort about the public utilizing their moorage site; We are living in uncertain financial times; and Supports Concept 3 working within the 1.2m budget.
Speaker 17 – Lucio Almeida Has lived here for 42 years and feels very disconnected from city information; Questioned the affordability of spending 7m on this project as past upgrade of $300,000 that was in the budget was never completed due to lack of funds; History shows the City has never been on budget. Look at Marina Way; and Suggested we fix only what is needed and leave Lakeshore alone.
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Speaker 18 – Lila Parsons Requested a vote by a show of hands on who supports what concept. The majority in attendance supports Concept 3; Lila would like to see the mounds removed from Lakawana Park and picnic tables added; No day moorage boats at all along all of the Lakeshore Drive waterfront; Always thought the City’s master plan was a ‘four season playground’; Need to look after our local assets; During her life here, she’s seen two beautiful parks gone. King’s Park is half the size it once was and Queen’s Park no longer exists. It is now the home of Memorial Arena and the Penticton Trade & Convention Centre; Does not want to see any more parks taken or any beach; Do not need so many crosswalks; Reminded everyone we do not have any money and are in debt; and To use what we have and go on.
Speaker 19 – Jeff Brown Has just moved back into this area; Stated our beach is not a ‘world class’ beach. Key thing to be a world class beach is not to have close parking and two-way traffic. With other beaches in high tourist areas around the world, you usually have to walk about 1/2 km to get to; and Quality of beach is what matters not how close it is to cars.
Speaker 20 – Wendy Grove 6. Concerned about the safety of her 5 year old grandson if you have cyclists using the same walkway.
CLOSING REMARKS Donna Lomas concluded the evening after no further speakers came forward and thanked the Media, Staff, Councillors and Committee Representatives for coming out. The public was also reminded of the other avenues available to express their opinions regarding this matter by either writing to the City and/or emailing any of the Councillors. The meeting was adjourned at 7:36 p.m.
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