SOME FURTHER DETAILS need to be laid out to fully understand how an extremely effective lobby from within the business community quickly worked its way up through the City Hall hierarchy to council.
As a result, unspecified recreational offerings will show up at the site of the old concession stand in Riverside Park this summer.
Such things are not contrary to the spirit and detail of the City’s Downtown Plan as some insist. While the park isn’t supposed to be subject to “commercialization,” the plan says Riverside should be promoted for “passive and active recreational activities.”
However, the Parks Master Plan is very big on public involvement in decisions made about parks, and that’s where council dropped the ball.
The full-court press was led by Tourism Kamloops CEO Bev DeSantis, who made some headlines a couple of years ago for trying to resurrect the unpopular idea of a convention centre built with tax dollars. She called the need for one “desperate.”
Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.