A 2.2-kilometre walking and cycling path the city is building through green space in Alta Vista has sparked controversy in the neighbourhood.

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A heavy roller works on the walking and cycling path in the green space between Conroy Road and Smyth Road. ((CBC))

"I think that's a terrible thing what they did and you know what … we weren't even notified about it," said Hennie Honignan, who walks her dog through the green space between Conroy Road and Smyth Road every day.

Honigan and other critics are concerned about the potential effect the path will have on the raccoons, groundhogs and other wildlife that live in the parkland.

But Coun. Peter Hume said the $250,000 project was too small for a full public consultation, and a sign was put up in the green space in January. Besides, he added, people had always used the space for walking and now the city is adding a cycling path.

"Everything we know about these pathways, they're good for communities, they are good for property values," he said.

Hume said the project should be complete by the end of fall. The city plans to "green up" the path with shrubs and trees next spring.

Cyclist Joel Gibson said a path would be safer because it will help keep his kids off city streets and make it easier for bicycle commuters to get to work.

With files from the CBC's Robyn Miller