Starting on Sept. 17, Sooke Elementary School students and others in the community will no longer have to struggle down a steeply sloped trail to get to the water’s edge at Cains Family Park.
The park was donated to the District of Sooke in 2005 by the Cains family; a family that first arrived in Sooke back 1890 when Richard Cain first sailed into the area. He was a fisherman and boat builder and the family’s love of the sea was one of the reasons that led it to gift the waterfront property to the district.
The prospect of the stairway was first introduced at Sooke council last year when safety and accessibility issues were raised by the public regarding the steep, rough traverse down the slope.
It was discovered that drainage infrastructure upgrades were already to be completed in the Kennedy Road neighbourhood, creating an opportunity to piggy-back on that work to save costs associated with improving water access at Cains Family Park.
“I am hopeful that the construction of this staircase will result in more young people exploring the beach, learning about our natural heritage,” Mayor Maja Tait said.
“Connecting all residents to our beautiful natural environment helps build a sense of place and community pride, both of which are priorities of council.”
An official opening ceremony for the stairway will take place at Cains Family Park (6511 Water Street) on Tuesday, Sept. 17 at 1:15 p.m.