New Brunswick

Fredericton continues talks over future of 2 city parks

People in Fredericton get a get another chance to voice their opinions on a possible future for Wilmot park. Jim Scott of Trace Planning and Design was hired by the city to come up with a conceptual plan for both Wilmot Park and Carleton Park.

Initial consultation showed no desire to change path network, interest in updating play equipment

Fredericton's new splash pad in Wilmot Park opened at the end of August. (Stephanie Sirois/CBC)

Fredericton residents will get another chance to voice their opinions on a possible future for Wilmot park on Thursday as the city continues public meetings over potential changes.

Jim Scott of Trace Planning and Design was hired by the city to come up with a conceptual plan for both Wilmot Park and Carleton Park.

The plans are based on comments from the public at two workshops last June along with feedback from an online survey.

"We've developed master plans for both the Wilmot and Carleton parks. Really it's about how do we organize the space going forward over the next 50 to 75 years," said Scott. 

Scott said some of the possible changes he looked at include the aging play equipment, aging trees that may need replacing over the next few decades and the sports courts in the parks to make sure they are up-to-date.

When the city did their public workshops, it found there was no desire for a change to the pathway networks.

The most prominent change the public desired was an upgrade to the play equipment. (CBC)
"They've been there for well over 100 years, 150 years actually in the case of Wilmot Park. No real big desire to change any of the pathway networks in those. They work just fine," said Scott. 

The biggest desired change that came from the public was to update the play equipment in Wilmot Park and finding a way to make that better for both children and parents. 

More consultation 

The public will get a chance to respond to the conceptual plan on for Wilmot Park on Thursday at Government House on Woodstock Road. 

"We'll get them to beat it up tonight, give it a good going over. We're not into a high level of detail this evening. Mostly we're just looking at the general ideas. From there, we will make changes and then essentially bring the public's plan forward to council for review," said Scott. 

Jim Scott found the public was uninterested in any changes to park walking trails. (CBC)
"We want to make sure we've planned exactly what the public intends. Once we are sure that we're doing that properly we can apply a price tag to it."

Scott said there isn't a big price tag associated with the plan, as it will serve more as a guide to Fredericton's council so when they do decide to make changes it will be in line with the public's desires. 

The public will get a chance to discuss the conceptual plan for Carleton Park on the afternoon of Oct. 22 at Picaroons Brewery on Union Street.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Philip Drost is a reporter with CBC New Brunswick.

With files from Information Morning Fredericton

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