Clearwater to look at selling off small parks

Any money raised by the sale of parks would have to go into a special fund set aside to purchase more parks

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What should District of Clearwater do with five small parks?

The five were inherited by the District at incorporation. They were created as a result of a policy that required developers to set aside a certain percentage of land for park during the subdivision of property.

Today, the municipality has the option of having the land set aside or taking the equivalent value in money.

The five are a 0.97 ha (2.39 acre) park on Fawn Road, a 1.02 ha (2.5 acre) park on Lake Summit Road, a 0.14 ha (0.3 acre) park at the end of Wildwood Road, 0.5 ha (1.24 acre) park in Taren Drive next to Grizzly Heights, and a 0.2 ha (0.51 acre) park on Ogden Road.

Several of the parks are steep or otherwise difficult to access.

The Lake Summit park, on the other hand, while difficult to get at, does provide the only potential public land access to the north end of Dutch Lake.

If the decision is made to proceed with the sale of all or some of the parks, there would be a formal process to follow, including more public consultation and notice.

Any money raised by the sale of parks would have to go into a special fund set aside to purchase more parks.

Fewer fire inspections

Also at its Oct. 18 meeting, town council directed staff to amend the District’s fire safety inspections policy to reduce the frequency of inspections for offices and retail/stores from annually to every two years.

In a report to council, fire chief Mike Smith noted that the Fire Service Act for B.C. requires municipalities to provide fire inspections of public buildings and hotels.

However, the act does not spell out how often those inspections should take place. That is up to town council, he said.

Inspections of other public buildings, such as churches, restaurants, and apartments are to continue to be done annually.

Seeking money for trails, water and sewer

Council authorized staff to submit a joint application with Wells Gray Outdoor Club for $240,000 from the BC Rural Dividend Program.

If the money is received, $190,000 would be used for the proposed Park Drive multi-use trail and $50,000 for the Candle Creek mountain bike trail system.

“We have some incredibly skilled and talented people working on the grant application for the Trails Task Force and Wells Gray Outdoor Club,” commented councillor Merlin Blackwell.

Council also approved in principle an application to the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund for funding to design and construct a third well to be known as Well No. 3 (Well No. 1 is located in Reg Small Park while Well No. 2 is across the road from Dutch Lake beach).

 

In addition, council directed staff to submit an application to the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund for an upgrade to Cell No. 1 aeration lagoon in the District’s sewage treatment facility. The upgrade would be accompanied by installation of a headworks system.