Charlottetown councillor says Brighton Road entry could see changes
© Guardian photo by Heather Taweel
Coun. Melissa Hilton, chair of Charlottetown’s parks and recreation committee, says the city is considering spending $100,000 in this year’s budget on upgrades to the entrance of Victoria Park off Brighton Road. It was one of many suggestions contained in a consultant’s report on the future of the crown jewel park.
Creating a new gateway into Victoria Park is one of the possibilities the City of Charlottetown is considering for this year.
That was the word on Monday from Coun. Melissa Hilton, chair of the city’s parks and recreation committee. The city set aside $100,000 in this year’s budget for changes to the park.
A master plan was released earlier this year about a series of possible changes to the park. The city calls the report a guiding tool, meaning it doesn’t have to act on any of them.
“We’re looking at having a beautiful gateway entrance on Brighton Road into Victoria Park or some small signage throughout the park just leading you in different directions,’’ Hilton said.
They’re also looking at possible upgrades to the pavilion located by the cannons but nothing is going to happen until the city finds out how much it is going to cost.
“A hundred thousand dollars, unfortunately, disappears fairly quickly these days.’’
Hilton also re-emphasized what Mayor Clifford Lee said last week, that a public meeting will be held before any major changes to the park take place.
Two concerned residents met with Lee at City Hall last week over rumours the city was going to tear up the current boardwalk and replace it with something bigger that could accommodate cyclists. Bob and Maureen Hutcheson presented Lee with a petition signed by more than 300 people, all opposing transforming it into a multi-use boardwalk.
The master plan, which was compiled by a consultant, suggested taking out the cycling lane and returning the park to two-way traffic. It was also suggested creating a multi-use boardwalk to accommodate the cyclists who will likely lose their dedicated lane.
“Tentatively, it’s staying the same, as of now. The (multi-use) boardwalk . . . is significant dollars so, of course, we don’t have (the money) for 2013-14. We’re (talking) a few years down the road.
“When the boardwalk needs repairs that’s when we’ll be looking at the possibility of changing the use of the boardwalk.’’
She said the boardwalk is not in need of any major repairs.
But, if and when the day comes when the conversation begins, there will have to be a public meeting to discuss it because the city is required to do so by the Victoria Park Bylaw, regardless of what any master plan might say.
And, based on Lee’s comments a week ago, there doesn’t seem to be any appetite to even consider boardwalk changes for some time to come.
“We’ll be engaging the public with any major changes,’’ Hilton said.