Letters: Make the tough decision

Council should set their priorities and make decisions good for all residents

Open letter to mayor and council:

I have been thinking a lot about the Bike Skills Park proposal and I believe we need to go back to the drawing board and prioritize our goals.

We have soccer fields which are in such a sad state in the winter that visiting teams threaten to leave and not play in the ‘lake.’ We have hundreds of children and adults using the soccer fields. There are children from five years of age and up. These teams are an enormous economic benefit to our community, as well as soccer is an excellent and relatively safe sport for mobility and coordination

We also have a shortage of baseball fields in the summer for the many local teams of children five and up to adults and visiting teams who also bring economic benefit as well as the team building and skills for children.

We have a local water park and a skateboard park. The skateboard park is also used by local cyclists living on the edge. This park needs better lighting and some work as well.

I know a local woman, worked with young people and local merchants to paint and clean up the skateboard park but who is to maintain it? This was also built by local volunteers and organizations. Police frequent the park as it is often used for undesirable uses. Perhaps at some time a bike skills park could be added to the skateboard park with adequate lighting and some supervision.

Many mountain bikers and skill and thrill seeking cyclists are using Harborview Park for their enjoyment. Harborview is listed on the South Island Mountain Biking website with a full map of trails and jumps etc. It is wonderful and a great place for those cycling enthusiasts.

We have a park in the center of Sooke which accommodates all users, ages and groups. Walk your dog, ride your bike through, push the stroller through to  go visit a friend for coffee in the village, have a wedding, family reunion, fish in Knott’s pond, dangle your feet in the water in the summer, kick around a soccer ball, play catch, jog or slide down the hills in the rare winter snow. These passive uses allow children and adults alike to be creative and spontaneous in our over organized world of work and play.

If this bike skills park were to go ahead, the $200,000 required to build the park, would come from fundraising which would negate the fundraising needed to maintain what we already have, the soccer fields and ball parks, which also serve a greater number of the public. It is fine to say that the bike skills park will be maintained by volunteers, but we all know there are fewer and fewer volunteers available as work takes them away from Sooke  and will that enthusiastic group be the same next year and the following years?

I remember when we were on the incorporation committee to incorporate Sooke, the comment made by Ed Macgregor, who had served in the B.C. municipal government, was that even though we have a budget and a goal, we will be constantly asked by groups and committees to fund many projects and ideas, because municipal government is local and accessible but, we need to be cautious on how we use our monies and energies.

Tough decisions need to be made and priorities set.

Ellen Lewers

Sooke

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

New crop of hand-crafted heats popping up across Saanich

Community arts program promotes wellness, sends message of caring from people of all ages

South Island Transportation Strategy looks to reduce reliance on personal vehicles

EV charging stations, bike lockers, new park-and-ride stalls among solutions in Capital Region

Hospital foundation president praises generosity of Peninsula residents

Karen Morgan said support during COVID-19, financial and otherwise, has been touching

BC Transit finishes wave of replacements with natural gas buses in Victoria

Average fleet age drops a few years with new buses added in 2020

Oak Bay couple honoured for 35 years volunteering

Mayor awards distinguished Oak Leaf to Bert and Doris Dinsmore

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Vancouver Island Tour de Rock riders roll into Parksville Qualicum Beach

Saturday’s schedule includes Port Alberni, Ucluelet and Tofino, followed by Nanaimo on Sunday

Most Read