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LETTER – Need for a downtown facelift goes much deeper than parking

200 block Victoria Street.

Recent comments regarding the City creating a demand for the downtown area are certainly well stated. As a long-time resident of the area I can agree that the downtown is in need of a revitalization and it goes further than just parking.

I am sure if the area had a facelift many people would not mind a little pleasant walk to shops etc. Not only good exercise but would help reduce the carbon footprint.

The downtown has a variety of interests for people — the library (already with a renovation plan in place), the art gallery, theatre, several coffee shops, restaurants to temp the foodie, sports centre, curling club, shopping centre, a nice park area for starters.

Kamloops is also home to a growing number of the 55-plus group of seniors, many of whom would like to be free of home ownership — taxes, stratas etc., and live in affordable, pet friendly rental apartments in an area where there is easy flat walking for all, including those with mobility issues, and a nice variety of amenities.

Yes, there are many apartments catering to this age group but with the exception of a few they are all owner occupied with a limited number of rentals and usually a waiting list for those. I am sure if merchants would have a positive attitude, put a little “spit and polish” to brighten up the area, add the nice summer plants/ winter lights and the city look to the demographics of the senior population we could have a much improved area. Promote it and it wilg row.

If we want to have an attractive, welcoming city and make Kamloops shine we need to make it inclusive and accessible to all. Efforts put forth now will pay future benefits for all.

As a long-time resident of the area I firmly believe it can be improved. Too often Kamloops tends to have a NIMBY attitude. Let’s not let it happen with this issue.

D. MARTIN

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About Mel Rothenburger (5254 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

3 Comments on LETTER – Need for a downtown facelift goes much deeper than parking

  1. Jennie Stadnichuk // January 15, 2018 at 7:05 PM // Reply

    I use downtown for shopping, appointments & much of my shopping. I’m in my mid-70’s and drive downtown from Valleyview. I don’t have problems finding parking. What I abhor is finding the parking kiosks! Being able to see the screen properly due to reflections on them! Newer computer screens are easier to read, but still far from the ease of popping a coin or credit card into an electronic meter as in Vancouver’s easy to see meters on a metal post). Another issue is parallel parking (backing up) into a spot, one can’t easily see the shortened, non-meter bearing post! Therefore I use downtown less frequently. The Lansdowne Village is convenient with free parking and wonderful London Drugs (even though I don’t mind paying for parking). Speaking with many downtown merchants I often initiate conversations with shop owners or employees. Most of them confirm that business has dropped since the “kiosks” were installed.

  2. One of the huge and untalked about major problem downtown has (yes the elephant in the room) is there are to many flaky, spoiled, entitled felling, bratty business owners who have lost a certain honor that was among business. I can easily think of at least 3 bad businesses that have a rep for treating good paying customers terribly and feel entitled to do so. What they seem to forget is this hurts their surrounding businesses. It’s very unfortunate.

  3. The Kamloops’ downtown is home to some fantastic retailers, some neat buildings, the fabulous farmers market and the occasional festival and cultural activity. Unfortunately though it is also drab and worn out, prowled by a noticeable amount of “sinister opportunists” (they can be found regularly congregating at the junk food outlet at Third and Victoria) often littered by garbage and lined by the ugliest street trees in the world.
    On matters of civic pride for which any downtown should be highest in the priority list of a civic governments we are, in my opinion, embarrassingly short of good actions and ideas.
    I am glad a few others also see the need for a revamp.
    Lastly, I never have a problem with parking. In within a few blocks there always is parking. But I would certainly welcome a unified parking protocol and the City owned parking meters replaced with better machines for which the screen is way too low for the majority of people using them and the keyboard is an absurdity.

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