Nine areas set for road rehabilitation in Kimberley
By Nowell Berg
On June 28, City of Kimberley council held its regular bi-monthly meeting.
Councillors Kyle Dalum, Kent Goodwin, Nigel Kitto, Jason McBain, Darryl Oakley and Sandra Roberts were present along with Mayor Don McCormick.
The press and public were not allowed in Council Chambers.
The meeting streamed live on the City’s YouTube channel. Watch the archive here.
Council awarded the 2021 paving contract to BA Blacktop (Cranbrook) for $338,947.61, not including taxes. The Annual Road Rehabilitation Program should commence in early July and be completed by late September.
- 303rd Ave. (300 block between 304th St. & 303rd Ave.);
- 307th Ave. (Between 304th St. & 305th St.);
- 303rd St. (400 block between 304 Ave. & 305th Ave.);
- 301A St.(400 block between 301st St. & 305th Ave.);
- Montgomery Ave. (Between Higgins St. & Ritchie St.);
- Lindsay St. (300 Block, width extension toward playfield);
- Bingay St. (Between Wallinger Ave. and Wallinger East Ave.);
- Swan Ave. hill (From Diamond St. downhill 120m to the north);
- McDougal Crescent.
The BA Blacktop quote came in substantially lower than council had budgeted, resulting in additional paving funds. Paving will also take place at the Civic Centre, Kimbrook Crescent and Asphalt Road, total cost $231,000.
Platzl washroom purchase approved while location remains uncertain
Council received a request from city staff to move forward on the installation of a public washroom on the Platzl at 145 Deer Park Avenue. While council approved the purchase of the facility, called an Ubraloo, they stalled out on where to actually locate it.
The city received a petition against placing the washroom at the proposed location. Corporate Officer Maryse Leroux deemed the petition to be “non-compliant” because it did not have a proper statement of purpose, residential address of the petitioner, some names were not legible, some petitioners did not have a last name and duplicate names were some of her concerns.
The petition took issue with the removal of two coniferous trees and “turn[ing] the natural landscape of the Platzl into a concrete jungle.”
In selecting the Deer Park location, Chris Mummery, Senior Manager Operations, said the location options were “limited by restroom requirements such as power, water and sewer.” He added the two removed trees would be replaced as well as landscaping and brick repairs that would bring “a fresh new look for this area of the Platzl that is long overdue.”
Mummery said that location posed several hurdles. The sewer system is “very shallow” and a water main is located behind the clock. “If you move it [Ubraloo] in front, [it] blocks the view of the clock.”
Coun. Goodwin asked if the Ubraloo would “fit into the clock.”
Mummery said they “did consider it,” but the clock structure would not support the kind of renovations needed to accommodate the washroom.
He noted, “The clock is in a poor state of repair.”
Mayor McCormick summarized his historical comments about the clock by suggesting, “This may be an opportunity to rebuild the clock to include a washroom.”
Coun. Oakley preferred the location because its “a prime spot and it cleans everything up. The Cuckoo clock is a whole new conversation.”
Coun. Kitto suggested better signage to direct people to the tourism visitor centre.
McCormick suggested the Ubraloo “needs a facade around it” to make it “look better” than it does.” Commenting on Coun. Goodwin’s FireSmart reference, he said, “If one ever went up it would take half the Platzl with it before the Fire Department could even get a hose out.”
The final vote was four to three against locating the Ubraloo on Deer Park. Councillors Dallum, Goodwin, Kitto and McBain voted against. Councillors Oakley, Roberts and Mayor McCormick vote in favour.
MRDT – two per cent hotel tax renewal
Tourism Kimberley (TK) relies on dollars raised from the hotel tax to promote all facets of the local tourism sector. The tax has remained steady at two per cent since its inception in 2007. The city and TK had hoped for an increase to three per cent in the new five year contract, April 1, 2022 to March 30, 2027, with the province.
City chief financial officer Jim Hendricks told council the contract would only be for two per cent, not the three per cent, due to a lack of consensus among accommodation providers.
Coun. Kitto said, “I am very disappointed we only applied for two per cent and not three per cent.”
As the city rep on the TK Board, he added, “I thought there was consensus, but unfortunately it wasn’t quite true. It kind of miffs me a little bit why the accommodators have so much power over the application process when its for the entire tourism community.”
Mayor McCormick supported Kitto’s contention. TK is “being held hostage by one person, who isn’t even a board member, and now that will cost TK $60,000. It was disconcerting and disappointing.” The Mayor has already made comments to the ministry suggesting they make adjustments to the legislation, “to give a little bit more power to the board and a little less to the accommodation sector which is really where all the power lies.”
Kimberley city council meets twice monthly starting at 7 p.m. Due to pandemic restrictions, the public is not allowed to attend Council Chambers.
The next scheduled council meeting: July 12, which is the only meeting that month. It live streams on the City of Kimberley YouTube channel.
Lead image: The Swan Avenue hill from Diamond Street down. e-KNOW file photos