One man is heartbroken while another is wondering if parts of a project can still go ahead.
On March 21, the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development announced a grant of $250,000 to the District of Sooke for the Grant Road Connector multi-use trail project, while declining the $500,000 grant application from Juan de Fuca Regional Director Mike Hicks for a lacrosse box in Sooke.
“It seems like we didn’t get the grant,” said Hicks. “I’m still in shock, heart broken, it just wasn’t meant to be.”
He said he thought the lacrosse project would have been the “most green, kid-friendly” project with a whole lot of support from parents and children.
“I feel bad for the kids. Of all the projects approved, this one was totally geared to the children”
Hicks said he would apply again.
Meanwhile District of Sooke Mayor Wendal Milne said the $250,000 grant they will receive will be used to build a eight-foot wide trail extending from Phillips Road to the corner of Charters and Throup Roads. The district opted for a trail rather than a sidewalk as the trail could accommodate people, cyclists and horses. The trail would promote physical activity and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The trail is on the first section of the Grant Road Connector which will eventually end up at West Coast Road.
The Grant Road Connector is currently “on hold” and Milne hopes they can still build the trail on its own without the connector road.
He said it is unfortunate and he is disappointed that the lacrosse box grant was not forthcoming as he also wanted to see that project go ahead.
Ida Chong, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development said, “Total project funding through the Community Recreation Program for southern Vancouver Island represents more than $2.8 million. That’s a significant investment in our region, in the health of our residents, and in building more robust communities with better amenities and more jobs. Programs like this can have a profound impact on communities, well beyond what we see on the surface.”