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WHAT’S UP DOWNTOWN – The 4th Avenue Pedestrian Plaza pilot project

A COMMON THEME is present in many city and community plans these days, one encouraging and promoting a walkable urban environment.

Downtown Kamloops has a reputation as being a particularly walkable place, with a score of 83/100 (as determined by http://www.walkscore.com). Naturally, dedicating certain streets as pedestrian corridors is a popular idea to improve walkability – but how does a city accomplish such a conversion in a typically vehicle-dominated landscape?

For Downtown Kamloops the answer lies in the 4thAvenue Pedestrian Plaza, a pilot project being implemented by the City of Kamloops and The Kamloops Central Business Improvement Association. From Thursday, July 26 until Sunday, Aug. 12, 4th Avenue will be closed to vehicle traffic from the alley between Lansdowne and Victoria Street to the alley between Seymour and Victoria Street. Victoria Street will remain open to east/west vehicle traffic, and transit modifications can be found on the BCTransit website (www.bctransit.com).

The project is being planned to coincide with several large downtown summer events, including the Merchants Market and the International Buskers Festival during the July 27-29 weekend, and Hot Nite in the City and Ribfest during the Aug. 10-12 weekend. Live entertainment, lighting, seating, and on-street beautification are all part of the plan to make 4th Avenue a pedestrian-friendly paradise where the best part of the summer can be thoroughly enjoyed.

Although this two-week project is temporary, the hope is that a more permanent plaza can be built once feedback has been received from the community. The project would be a progressive step forward in creating an outdoor gathering place for people in the heart of downtown Kamloops.

By placing an emphasis on walkability and pedestrian importance, Kamloops becomes stronger as a city and achieves sustainability goals originally created to motivate projects such as this one. As the City continues to develop the Downtown Plan, initiatives such as the 4thAvenue Pedestrian Plaza are sure to play an influential role in the progression of similar ideas.

The value of pedestrian plazas has been proven in many cities throughout the world, from Vancouver and Calgary to Sydney and Charlottesville. The positive feedback already being received by the community as well as the support garnered from the workshops, launch events, and community open-houses shows that Kamloops is ready to try a similar project scaled to match a city of our size.

Make sure to attend the plaza for yourself throughout the project’s duration and let the CAP Team know what you think.

This article was written by Nathan Bymoen, Customer Care and Patrol (CAP) Team Member. Reach the team at 250-572-3008/3009 or the Customer Care & Info Centre at 250-572-3017. Email capteam@downtownkamloops.com. Follow on Facebook, Instagram (Downtownkamloops) and Twitter (@downtownkamloops).

 

 

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About Mel Rothenburger (5943 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 WHAT’S UP DOWNTOWN – The 4th Avenue Pedestrian Plaza pilot project

  1. When I was a young fella back in the wonderful 50’s I wandered about Spain with a backpac. It was a time when Franco ruled.The newest car I saw was a 36 Ford. Fords ran their original 4 cylinder and V8 engines. All other makes had been converted to diesel.
    As a kid from Canada I was impressed by the German military helmets,the very polite civil guards,tri- motored German military aircraft,chaperoned girls,flamenco music and the fact Spain was another world,20 years behind us in Canada.I especially liked the vehicle free tiled open public spaces with their small restaurants etc.particularly one in Seville.
    Good luck with ours. It will be a tough go with all the druggies and bums you are going to have to deal with. A stint on Calvert Island,with self government,free hammer and good chain saw and all the nails they need would be my cure. Much too simple I know.
    Again good luck.

  2. Shame on you. you did no background check on the pedestrian plaza on 4th ave. no attempt was made to contact KCBIA president Carlo DeSantis or city hall .Simply expounding half the story and half the truth is not a professional attitude.Your history with Kamloops News should have taught you to gain all the information available before getting on your soap box.

    • Mel Rothenburger // July 27, 2018 at 8:14 PM // Reply

      I’m guessing you’re talking about my editorial, not the CAP team article. Can you please explain which part wasn’t accurate?

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