Youth can look forward to having a multi-use recreational space following city council’s decision Thursday to proceed with proposed designs for the Topaz Park artificial turf field, skateboard park and bike skills park.
Replacement of the artificial turf on Finlayson Field is the first phase of renovations in the Topaz Park Improvement Plan, and will be followed by construction of the skate and bike parks. Design concepts for each were approved by council at the Aug. 5 committee of the whole meeting.
Survey results from the public input phase saw 79 per cent of respondents agree that the proposed designs succeed in achieving the principles established by the plan.
Key goals for the Topaz Park redevelopment include accessibility and inclusion, multi-functionality, sustainability and innovation and celebrating the urban forest. Eight trees will be removed to accommodate the project.
Council members provided additional direction to staff to ensure minimized light pollution for local residents, protect Garry oak trees and maintain washroom accessibility standards, which includes adding an adult change table, grab bars and contrasting floor tiles for the visually impaired.
While the vote to approve was unanimous, councillors had various questions for staff.
“Hanging out at a skate park is much more constructive than other things they do,” he said, joking that he is the father of a teenager himself.
Council will report on the second implementation phase of the Topaz Park Improvement Plan by late summer or early fall of 2022.
Topaz Park is the City of Victoria’s second-largest park behind Beacon Hill, and its Finlayson Field artificial turf is the city’s busiest playing field. To learn more about the Topaz Park Improvement Plan, visit victoria.ca.
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