Some events happened in downtown 100 Mile House during the past few months that prove good things can happen with some foresight and co-operation.
Without much fanfare, local businessman Dave Dickie and the District of 100 Mile House found a way to get rid of an eyesore in the downtown core.
Purser Creek Holdings Ltd. owned a couple of lots on the corner of Birch Avenue and First Street.
Our municipal government and Mr. Dickie worked out a deal that would see the two parties swap a couple of pieces of land – almost identical in size – that would allow the two lots to be consolidated into one larger lot.
The land swap gave the District some extra space on the corner of Birch and First, so it can build a sidewalk in the future.
Mayor Mitch Campsall said that corner is very busy with motor vehicle traffic and it was not safe for pedestrians.
The additional property will allow a sidewalk to be constructed around the corner, which will provide a safer walk for youngsters and their guardians going to and from 100 Mile House Elementary School.
District councillors have been paying attention to pedestrian safety, as they built a sidewalk connecting Pioneer Haven, an affordable seniors’ housing development on Aspen Street, to the Birch Avenue entrance of the Coach House Square last fall.
The dilapidated buildings on the two lots were knocked down and all of the rubble removed and the lots levelled and that got rid of the eyesore in the downtown core.
Council had to go through the lengthy process of adopting a road closure bylaw to trade its lanes for the land on the corner for the future sidewalk. The process included a public hearing that didn’t attract any naysayers.
On Feb. 25, council adopted the road closure bylaw, which paved the way for the land swap to go forward.
The show of co-operation for both parties was the fact they would equally share the costs of all aspects of the land swap.
However, the show of co-operation goes even further, as Mr. Dickie reached an agreement with Ingrid Meyer, a South Cariboo Agri-Culture Enterprise Centre member, to turn the building lot into an urban community garden.
The focus of the community garden will be to grow fresh produce for the various agencies that provide emergency food for our less fortunate friends and neighbours.
This is a perfect example of how compassion, co-operation and foresight makes 100 Mile House a caring community and one that we can be proud to share with our fellow residents.