Your Voice heard

By Geoff Lee

December 15, 2015 10:05 AM

Lloydminster City Hall may have to lay off Santa Claus or go broke.
Council recently released a summary of opinions on city topics, projects and policies from residents aired during the first Your Voice event Nov. 3 that resembles an expensive Christmas list for the city to undertake.
The Your Voice summary was discussed at Council on Monday.
A second Your Voice event is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 23 with topics to be determined.
Meanwhile, the city has its hands full sifting through, and possibly costing, what people want to see in its Community Facilities Master Plan for starters. Build a new turf field, an indoor pool, more trails, a museum and arenas said those who ranked a list of facilities they want to see the city build someday.
A strong turnout from the local soccer association at Your Voice pitched the need for an indoor soccer field as the top facility priority.
The indoor pool however, generated the most comments and is what many residents want to see the city improve or replace. Comments ranged from the pool is too small and overcrowded, to the pool needs to be expanded to 100-metres and have a rotating bulkhead and dive tank.
The city has budgeted $59.5 million in 2016 capital projects ranging from roads and sidewalks to recreation facilities and waste water projects.
Your Voice at Lloydminster Comprehensive High School drew additional comments on the city’s transportation master plans, downtown revitalization, the land use bylaw, community housing and the purchasing and procurement policy.
The city plans to borrow $10 million in 2016 for Phase 1B of the north-south, one-way traffic corridor along a portion of Hwy. 17, prompting some questions arising from Your Voice for the city to ponder.
One person urged the city to save money by not building the one way traffic couplet with the comment: “Do not ask the taxpayers to get involved in this idea.”
The city received more than 600 responses to its online transportation survey last summer in addition to Your Voice input.
The transportation master plan will be presented to Council in early 2016.
There is also support for a designated and enforced truck route.
“Make truck routes with better cornering around the city(not through the city on 44 St.) wrote one resident at Your Voice.
The city plans to move its downtown revitalization plan to the next phase in February, based on input from a total of 56 Your Voice comments.
The Root: Community Emporium, events and festivals, the old post office, restaurants, retail and the theatre generated the most likes about the downtown area.
Parking, lack of selection, and the north south couplet, traffic and the railway generated the most dislikes among downtown issues.
The city’s land use bylaw also generated its fair share of comments including a need from some residents for secondary suites in residential areas.
Other residents told the city that secondary suites, garage suites and granny suites should only be allowed within subdivisions with lane ways.
One person asked about a bylaw regulation for unique uses. “Is the bylaw (land use bylaw) going to allow adult entertainment in the downtown core area?”
The city has replied that the bylaw allows limited adult entrainment within industrial areas only.
Draft bylaws are expected to be presented to Council in January.
Your Voice also generated 17 applications for the city’s Community Housing Initiative or CHIP program.

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