News

City supports street cafés

Street cafés may be up and running on the streets of downtown Salmon Arm by spring.

Or at least one might.

City engineering and public works director Rob Niewenhuizen responded to a request by the city’s Downtown Parking Commission to council – that time be allocated to look into and develop a proposal for the development of street cafés – by stating a fair bit of research has already been done, and that staff is currently debating how onerous the process should be.

“We’d like to basically make sure we’ve got our bases covered as far as liabilities and whatnot, but we will do our best to accomplish that before spring,” said Niewenhuizen.

Asked if the city has received any expressions of interest from local businesses, Niewenhuizen said he’d received correspondence from the downtown improvement association, and that there’s only one interested party.

“There were also some comments made in regards to lost parking because of these types of developments,” Niewenhuizen added.

Couns. Chad Eliason and Debbie Cannon spoke enthusiastically in favour of the city making available the opportunity for street cafés come spring.

A second request from the commission, that council approve funds for a comprehensive traffic master plan for the downtown, was not met with the same enthusiasm.

Coun. Denise Reimer said the commission is concerned with the flow of traffic downtown and wanted to make sure a master plan is on council’s radar.

Coun. Alan Harrison said he didn’t like the part of the motion about approving funds.

“For me, I think the timing maybe is not right,” said Harrison. “There’s a lot to talk about – the Ross Street underpass – it seems to me that a comprehensive traffic master plan should happen after that.”

Council opted to move the request to 2015 budget deliberations.

 

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