Hardly a scene that fits in with a vibrant and beautiful downtown.

Kootenay Co-op should dream big

We feel both of the city’s suggestions would go a long way in making the property a downtown treasure.

When the Kootenay Co-op brought together its membership last week to unveil the dream of the future, the board of directors put no limits on the scope of what might happen in the 700 block of Vernon Street.

It’s still early in the process and those guiding the project want to gather member input first. Though leaving details of the future move of the grocery store open-ended, project manager Russell Precious did tell the crowd of almost 200 that there are two basic options: refurbish and keep it simple or pursue a more grand comprehensive plan that would entail levelling the current Extra Foods building to start from scratch.

It’s the latter that holds promise for reinvigorating the east end of the downtown and it’s one that should be given serious thought.

City planner Dave Wahn was one of the speakers at last Monday night’s meeting at the Best Western Baker Street Inn. He was brought in to talk about how the Co-op’s new location could fit in well with the city’s Sustainable Waterfront and Downtown Master Plan.

A couple of ideas popped out during Wahn’s presentation.

The first was getting rid of dead space like the big windowless wall that currently lines Vernon Street. Wahn said the city would like to see the building become more approachable from the street level.

The second dealt with the huge parking lot that currently wraps around the building. Wahn suggested any new plan consider filling in much of the parking lot with features that would take away the ugliness of a paved nothingness. Parking is vital, but it can be done with much more flair.

We feel both of the city’s suggestions would go a long way in making the property a downtown treasure.

Tearing down the current building and developing a project that would include housing and other retail space is a forward looking approach. It would take money, time and risk, but the end result would be a major historical turning point for our city’s core.


Just Posted

Smoky skies force flight cancellations

Air quality in West Kootenay also a health concern

Castlegar bridge designed by architect of collapsed Italian bridge

Riccardo Morandi designed the Kinnaird Bridge, which is part of Highway 3.

Columbia River Treaty negotiators met in Nelson this week

Next session is in Portland in October

UPDATE: Fire forces closures and delays on Highway 3 at Kootenay Pass

Motorists should detour using Kootenay Lake ferry

Evacuation alert issued for City of Kimberley

Three hours after an evacuation order was issued for the St. Mary Valley, an evacuation alert was issued for the nearby community of Kimberley.

PHOTOS: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

The rest of the province also dealing with thick haze as smoky skies continue

Safeway union urges prejection of mediator recommendations

Says mediator asks for too many concessions

Fire chases B.C. crews out of their own camp

Crews in Burns Lake had to leave after a wildfire reportedly overtook their sleeping quarters

To address peacock problem, B.C. city moves ahead on trapping plan

Surrey’s new bylaw focuses on ensuring people no longer feed the birds, ahead of relocation

Hospitals to see ‘delays’ in care after losing Saudi students, health group says

About 1,000 Saudi residents called back to kingdom after suspending diplomatic relations with Canada

Bernier diatribe against ‘extreme multiculturalism’ boosts Liberal coffers

Party spokesperson Braeden Caley says online donations doubled, social media engagement quadrupled

‘Disjointed’ system hinders British Columbia First Nations in wildfire fight

More than 550 wildfires were burning in B.C. and crews were bracing for wind and dry lightning

Federal government announces over $115 million to Royal Canadian Navy

Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan was at Victoria’s CFB Esquimalt to announce missile system upgrades

RCMP nab prolific car thief after month-long, B.C.-wide search

A province-wide warrant was issued for Brian Robert Stephan in June for a litany of offences

Most Read