Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street

Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street
Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street
Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street
Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street
Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street
Suggested designs revealed for Duncan’s Station Street Park, Whistler Street

Mark Lakeman is hopeful the draft designs that he presented last week to Duncan’s city council for Whistler Street and 85 Station St. in Duncan could be a vision of the future of the two downtown locations.

Lakeman is a principal of the Portland-based architecture and planning firm Communitecture and a co-founder of the City Repair Project.

The firm was hired by the City of Duncan in September to conduct a public place-making design project for the property and the street, and held a series of public workshops over the fall and winter to gather ideas of what people want to see there.

RELATED STORY: CITY OF DUNCAN LOOKS TO PUBLIC FOR IDEAS FOR WHISTLER STREET, DOWNTOWN PARK

The designs presented at the City of Duncan’s council meeting on Sept. 8 were the result of those, and other, consultations with the community.

“Hopefully, [these designs] will be seen as a vision for the future and shows how things can be transformed to make life more conducive, safe and inspiring for the community,” Lakeman told council.

Located along the east side of the Trans-Canada Highway near the centre of the City of Duncan, Whistler Street is a 200-metre length of road running from Coronation Avenue to the border of the Municipality of North Cowichan.

In a report to council in September, Duncan CAO Peter de Verteuil said that the city is experiencing issues of public disorder along the Trans-Canada Highway corridor, and in particular in the area of Whistler Street.

He said the alignment and orientation of buildings, lack of pedestrian opportunities, and limited landscaping in the area don’t provide a welcoming environment for most customers and members of the public.

RELATED STORY: CITY OF DUNCAN TO GO ONLINE TO GATHER PUBLIC FEEDBACK ON PROJECTS

Communitecture’s design for the street depicts a transformation of the public street to a multi-use urban space and a destination for public events.

To make the street more pleasant and safe for pedestrians and visitors, sidewalks, lighting and tree lines would be placed along both sides of the street and, in some places, there would be small green parklets and swales separating pedestrians from vehicles.

Graphics on the street and tensile fabric and string lights overhead would turn three areas of the street into celebrated places.

The southern end would become a welcoming gateway, while the middle and north end would be equipped to host performing arts, food festivals, and art markets.

As for the small parcel of city-owned land on Station Street, Communitecture’s design recommends a variety of seating spaces and gathering areas that would be arranged around a spacious round lawn.

Covered tables to the south and east would provide space for meals and conversations in most seasons.

Berms and boulders to the north would invite young people to play and even splash in a seasonal stream in summer.

Planters and benches across the street would extend the gathering space out into the urban streetscape, and food trucks parked on Station Street and public washrooms in the alley to the north would provide additional amenities.

Council made no final decisions on the concepts presented at the meeting, but asked staff to prepare a report on implementation and timelines.

De Verteuil said that while the city doesn’t have a formal process intended to get further public feedback on the designs, as they were based on a lot of public consultation, staff and council are always open to feedback.

“The next steps are that staff will work on developing more detailed cost estimates and breakdowns for the proposed concepts for discussion during upcoming budget discussions, as these designs are very preliminary,” he said.

“The intent would be that these projects will not be fully implemented until the city is successful in accessing provincial or federal grant programs to reduce the city’s costs.”

De Verteuil said there will also be further specific consultations with the Downtown Duncan BIA and the Whistler Street property owners on the respective projects before either project moves forward.

“Particularly with the Whistler Street project, which includes concepts for both private lands as well as public lands,” he said.

“We will also post these current concepts and Mark Lakeman’s presentation on our existing PlaceSpeak pages and allow for public feedback to be submitted.”

Duncan Mayor Michelle Staples said she is looking forward to see how the process on invigorating the two locations will proceed.

“You have created an amazing product for us to bring forward to the community,” she said to Lakeman.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

municipal politics

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cowichan Valley Capitals forward Sean Ramsay comes away with the puck after a battle along the boards during a game against the Alberni Valley Bulldogs on May 1, 2021. (Elena Rardon/Black Press Media)
Three wins in a row for Cowichan Capitals

BCHL team enjoying best stretch of the season

Friends have set up a GoFundMe account for the family of Dorothy Littau, who was diagnosed with colon cancer last month. (Submitted)
GoFundMe campaign set up ‘ever-present force in South Cowichan schools’

Dorothy Littau was diagnosed with colon cancer in April

Peter and Wayne Richmond and 49th Parallel Grocery won the award for Business Achievement 20+ Employees at the Duncan Cowichan Chamber of Commerce’s 22nd Black Tie Awards on Tuesday, May 4, 2021. (Submitted)
Black Tie winners announced during virtual awards event

Recipients gave speeches by phone while being live-streamed on YouTube

Cobble Hill’s Bob Collins (left) and reservist Keenan Hayes stand at attention at Cobble Hill Cenotaph in this photo taken on Oct. 22, 2019, to honour members of the Canadian military who died in Canada in non-combat roles. (File photo)
MacGregor seeks to honour armed services members who died on Canadian soil

MP introduces bill to mark Oct. 22 as “Canadian Armed Forces Members’ Day”

Jose Marchand prepares Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination doses at a mobile clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, in Montreal, Friday, April 30, 2021. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization is coming under fire after contradicting the advice Canadians have been receiving for weeks to take the first vaccine against COVID-19 that they’re offered. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Trudeau says he is glad he got AstraZeneca, vaccines are only way out of pandemic

‘The most important thing is to get vaccinated with the first vaccine offered to you’

B.C.’s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Dip in COVID-19 cases with 572 newly announced in B.C.

No new deaths have been reported but hospitalized patients are up to 481, with 161 being treated in intensive care

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O���Connell photo)
Clash between loggers, activists halts forestry operations over Fairy Creek

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

The courthouse in Nanaimo, B.C. (News Bulletin file)
Island man sentenced in Nanaimo after causing a dog unnecessary pain and suffering

Kiefer Tyson Giroux, 26, of Nanoose Bay, given six-month sentence

Following a one-year pause due to the pandemic, the Snowbirds were back in the skies over the Comox Valley Wednesday (May 5) morning. Photo by Erin Haluschak
Video: Snowbirds hold first training session in Comox Valley in more than 2 years

The team will conduct their training from May 4 to 26 in the area

Solar panels on a parking garage at the University of B.C. will be used to separate water into oxygen and hydrogen, the latter captured to supply a vehicle filling station. (UBC video)
UBC parkade project to use solar energy for hydrogen vehicles

Demonstration project gets $5.6M in low-carbon fuel credits

FILE – A student arrives at school as teachers dressed in red participate in a solidarity march to raise awareness about cases of COVID-19 at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. ‘should be able to’ offer 1st dose of COVID vaccine to kids 12+ by end of June: Henry

Health Canada authorized the vaccine for younger teens this morning

A woman in the Harrison Mills area was attacked by a cougar on Tuesday, May 4. B.C. Conservation Officers killed two male cougars in the area; the attack was determined to be predatory in nature. (File photo)
2 cougars killed following attack on woman in Agassiz area

Attack victim remains in hospital in stable condition

Most Read