No more walkways, Regina downtown plan says
The City of Regina says it's worried all the climate-controlled walkways downtown are discouraging people from shopping at the street level — and it doesn't want any more of them built.
The city's new Downtown Neighbourhood Plan, endorsed by council Monday night, says it wants to "encourage active streets and discourage the development of climate-controlled pedestrian linkages."
Enclosed walkways — heated in the winter and cool in the summer — were a major change to the downtown when they were introduced in the 1990s.
Their introduction meant, for instance, that people in certain office buildings could get to the Cornwall Centre without having to brave the elements on the street — good news for some when it was -30C outside.
But the city says that's a problem.
"The desire for comfortable pedestrian experiences in the downtown must be balanced with the goal of active downtown streets," the plan says.
Under the downtown plan, the existing walkways can remain, but new ones won't be permitted without amending the plan and having an "appropriate public participation process."
The plan, which also includes the City Square plaza and other major changes to the downtown designed to make it more pedestrian-friendly, now goes to the provincial government for approval.