A planning vision for the King Street road closure includes a new condo development. Reducing Victoria Road to one lane each way with a tree-lined median in the middle and on-street parking is also referenced in the image

City development plans create concern in Farwell area

Two city planning visions are creating angst amongst those who live next to the proposed changes, and so far city council hasn’t publicly reacted to citizen concerns.

Two city planning visions are creating angst amongst those who live next to the proposed changes, and so far city council hasn’t publicly reacted to citizen concerns.

King Street property disposition

At their Feb. 22 regular meeting, city council approved a staff request to move forward with a process to sell a portion of city-owned street to private developers.

The King Street disposition would see the one-block portion of King Street that abuts Victoria Road appraised and sold, likely to a developer that owns two adjacent properties.

The parcel of land is legally a road, but is currently covered with trees.

Not so fast, says neighbour Bill Gill.

He’s complained for years that the intersection in the laneway next to his house is already snarled. Tourists looking to get onto Victoria get stuck in the lane. Commercial traffic from Jacobson Ford uses the laneway to access their property, despite assurances from the city before the dealership was built that wouldn’t happen.

Gill has suggested remedies over the years, including paving King Street through to Victoria and other alternatives, but he feels his ideas haven’t been listened to.

Gill says the traffic situation in his laneway will only get worse if many new condo units are added.

Columbia River waterfront walkway

A draft of the City of Revelstoke’s Parks, Recreation and Culture Master Plan outlines many long-term planning goals, including the creation of a waterfront walkway that would link Centennial Park to the trail that ends at the Big Eddy Bridge.

However, many Front Street residents are opposed to the idea of punching a public access route through their riverfront yards, and they note the guesstimated $5 million the city would have to come up with to bring the vision to fruition.

A protest letter from the group was tagged onto the city’s Feb. 8 agenda, but the residents’ concerns got little acknowledgement from councillors at the table.

Front Street resident Jeff Nicholson says the letter and petition to council was designed to underscore their concerns.

He said the idea had been studied in 1992 and 2000, and reports were prepared. They identified issues such as cost, riparian concerns, privacy issues and the likely need for major construction of a dike that could cause serious disruptions for years.

The letter to council notes other options, such as creating an on-street bike path on Front Street. Another suggestion is to consider existing legal accesses to the Columbia River that exist on Front Street to create less intrusive waterfront view parks to compliment the on-street pathway.

Nicholson said the letter and petition was a reminder to council about residents’ concerns. “We are opposed down here and they know that,” he said of the plan.