Nelson residents can expect gradual development and parking improvements at Crescent Valley Beach now that it has been officially designated as a regional park.
Brian Carruthers, chief administrative officer of the Regional District of Central Kootenay, said there are plans for development but that they likely won’t happen until next year. He said they are working with the Ministry of Transportation to come up with a parking development plan to provide safe access and to avoid people parking along the highway.
“Currently the parking is problematic. We know that. The parking there was never designed. It just evolved,” said Carruthers.
Carruthers also said the presence of nearby nesting sites for the western screech owl will have to be kept in mind as they consider building new facilities and developing the area to better serve the crowds of people who routinely use the beach for tubing, kayaking, boating and swimming on the Slocan River.
“This is a very popular recreation site for local residents and visitors alike,” said Area H Director Walter Popoff. “The generosity of the landowner ensures this site will continue to be enjoyed and protected.”
“Local maintenance and upkeep of the beach and trails has been good over the years,” said Popoff. “Adding Crescent Valley Beach to our network of regional parks will enable an expanded parking area, washroom facilities, signage and other improvements.”
The newly created park is 2.53 hectares (6.25 acres) and includes 30 meters (approximately 1000 feet) of waterfront. The Patrick brothers, who were founders of the Pacific Coast Hockey League, later incorporated in to the National Hockey League, had a mill that has remains within the park boundaries.
The new park was made possible by a land donation in 2011. It will be part of a Parks and Recreation Master Plan being developed for the Slocan Valley.
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