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EDITORIAL – Vandals strike again, this time on the Valleyview bike overpass

(Image: Mel Rothenburger)

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

ONE OF THESE DAYS — or so I’d like to think — I’ll stand here and report that Kamloops has become a cleanly scrubbed city respected and cared for by all.

Sadly, that day isn’t coming any time soon.

Just a couple of weeks ago, I lamented the removal of the bull statue from Riverside Park due to repeated acts of vandalism.  What must we do, I asked, encase public art in cages?

Well, the characters who insist on trying to ruin Kamloops have struck again, this time on the pedestrian-bicycle overpass that connects Valleyview with the downtown area.

The overpass is a vital link that lets people leave their vehicles at home and use foot and peddle power to safely get between those two parts of town.

The Valleyview Interchange Multi-Use Pathway, as it’s officially known, was opened 10 years ago. It was a big deal, planned and talked about by no fewer than four City councils. The cost ballooned from an initial estimate of $2 million to almost $6 million by the time it was finished.

While some viewed it as a frivolous waste of money, it was actually a necessity after construction of the so-called bypass that cut Valleyview in two and severed it from the rest of the city.

So, yes, that little overpass is important, something that needs to be cared for and treated with respect. Instead, the vandals have struck again, smashing half the three dozen 4X8 safety-glass panels that protect its users from the tracks below.

The damage no doubt amounts to tens of thousands of dollars.

Instead of replacing the glass panels, the City will install perforated metal panels that will stop the bad guys from busting them but will certainly detract from the appearance and do nothing to discourage the graffiti vandals. In fact, they’ll probably be even more attractive to the spray-bomb crowd.

So, those who tear down, instead of build, have won again.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at mrothenburger@armchairmayor.ca.

About Mel Rothenburger (9122 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.

2 Comments on EDITORIAL – Vandals strike again, this time on the Valleyview bike overpass

  1. Dave Walters // August 9, 2022 at 7:18 AM // Reply

    I cross over the bridge regularly and have watched the vandalism slowly progress. I think that to break those panels takes a fair amount of time and energy. Why can’t cameras be installed and the perpetrators be identified and or arrested? A conviction for anything is doubtful but that’s another story.

  2. Tony Brumell // August 9, 2022 at 5:59 AM // Reply

    Destruction comes in many forms. RThe city of Kamloops seems to be trying to destroy the character of several older nieghbourhoods with the building of staggeringly intrusive and damaging monster houses. Apparently it’s OK to wipe out a long term residents future with a signature from city planning . The monstrosity on Pine Crescent is only one example . Another more destructive example is being built five feet from my eastern property line. This soul destroying ediface is ruining my 30 years of effort to make a home that I could live in through my last years. Peace and privacy were a simple goal but the city has destroyed that .And it is all legal. This 30 by 60 foot wall is a heat reflector and wind blocking prison aimed directly at the afternoon sun. I no longer have any cooling breezes across my property and it reached 44 degrees last week. The city says “we want to protect seniours from the extreme heat of heat dome. I wonder what they mean . They have put me and my “dream” of a log home in the toilet and very possibly me as well.

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