Adjustments made to downtown landscaping

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This spring, some of the flower beds and other landscaping in the historic downtown area were tweaked, a change partly due to the increasing and changing passenger traffic caused by COVID-19.

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In 2016, landscaping improvements were approved as part of the “inner city revitalization project”.

“Based on this original design, there were a few issues raised by both citizens and some downtown businesses, particularly those related to the flower beds that were on the first floor,” said Drew Hyndman, general manager for development and development Community Services July 12th.

“When you want to park your car, we’ve had a number of situations where company visitors sprained their ankles as they walked through these flower beds. Overall, the original design was problematic. “

The city first tried to address the problem last fall, but was not able to do so until early this year.

“Over the past year, we’ve worked with the various companies with COVID to respond and essentially create additional hard surfaces in these areas to make extra space for people visiting our community during the pandemic,” he said.

“Essentially we tried to complete this project last spring or last fall, but we couldn’t and didn’t finish it until this spring.”

More hard surface has been added and damaged trees and plants have been replaced.

“There was a disease (on some trees) … Three different trees were planted, this time three different types of trees,” replied Hyndman.

“We also confirm that they went beyond their guarantee, so we did our due diligence on this. I think we took some extra steps on this project to make sure they are more successful and if you’ve been there recently it looks pretty good. “

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City councils admitted that work needed to be done.

“I think the communication about the project could still have been better, but that’s a completely different side effect, but at the end of the day it’s ready and it’s over and we can all go on with it and enjoy the summer down there”, said Fedeyko.

Mayor Jeff Genung added, “I think the other point I remember was also the snow build-up in winter, with the mulch beds creating even more barriers for pedestrians or people trying to park and get to shops , contribute. It wasn’t just a seasonal thing, but all year round. “

Mulch beds don’t seem like a safety issue, but when it deals with tens of thousands of visitors it becomes one.

“We had a couple of sprained ankles from people stepping in the flower beds,” Hyndman said.

“There was additional maintenance costs as people walked through the flower beds and then just the bigger picture. The mulch was stepped on the sidewalk and was cleaned regularly by various establishments so it was a number of different situations that led us to the hard pavement [which] I think it’s a much better solution. “

The new topping can also help some companies.

“With these terraces that could be expanded and we had certain groups that wanted to make terraces that the flower beds were in front of, so now they have a hard surface so if we want to pursue that in the future there are a lot of advantages”

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