Sooke could be getting its next landmark in a couple of years, if a local artisan’s proposal to build a wishing pond in the town core comes to fruition.
Paul Unwin approached Sooke council last week hoping to bridge the idea and reality of a “make Sooke proud” memorial park at the proposed new library location, off Anna Marie Road.
“Sooke has potential and this is a project I’d like to see come to fruition,” Unwin told council, adding he’ll provide a cost estimate once a location is picked.
Unwin’s sketches show a natural setting, along with a clock, and wooden sculptures of iconic animals from the area such as bears, cougars, wolves and birds.
It’s a little too early to consider such a project, said Mayor Maja Tait, noting Sooke residents will need to be onboard with the idea.
“[For something like this] you need to have some very broad public engagement on. It’s a great idea, but there are other great ideas out there as well,” she said.
“I don’t want to commit to this without giving others the opportunity to create something.”
The district is still waiting for the particulars on the library land to be sorted out, Tait said, and won’t commit the property to other uses until then.
The idea certainly got council’s attention, such as Coun. Ebony Logins, who pointed out a survey of what people would like to see in front of a public facility.
“We had quite a few comments what was outside the [community centre] facility, such as a water feature, a park like feature, something to build a sense of community,” Logins said. “I’m glad you brought this forward because it does play into that.”
Coun. Brenda Parkinson also expressed interest in the idea.
“It’s a neat project and it would look lovely in our town,” she said.
Unwin told council he would like to see the district allocate staff to help raise funds for the project.