Kicking Horse River Dike Improvement Project - Engagement on Phase 3 Print Article Font Size
As we kicked off the project with the burying of shallow utilities in Fall 2019, we collected input to understand the community’s values and vision for the future of this area. Feedback was collected through on online feedback form, in-person at the Farmers' Market on Sept. 18 and through a sounding board located in Spirit Square.
This information will help to guide the engineers and landscape architects who are working on the design for beautification of the area in Phase 3 of the project. It is important to note that due to the nature of this area and the project itself, there are a number of challenges and existing constraints that will impact the overall design solution and consequently the nature of the ultimate built form. These include but are not limited to budget, service vehicle access, narrow corridor width, grading, and utility conflicts. 

Based on the feedback provided by residents, preferred design components will be integrated into the plan to achieve community goals to the extent possible.

What we heard

Overall, public engagement participants described their vision for the FOr-report.pngarea as a place to walk along the river, visit and shop at local businesses, connect with the community and come to enjoy the space and surrounding natural environment. The following key themes were identified through the public engagement process or you can read the full What We Heard Report here:

  • Making the space more people-focused: when asked what types of access is important, the majority of respondents agreed that pedestrian and cycling access is the most important and that vehicle access is not important at all. Respondents mentioned making the area more people friendly and transforming it into a public space that is pedestrian and cyclist friendly. Feedback highlighted a desire to incorporate seating and lighting, bike parking, more access to patios; and restricting/limiting access for vehicular traffic. 
  • Enhancing natural spaces: words such as natural, green space, trees, water, flowers and natural rock were used to describe how respondents would like the area to look and there was an emphasis on maintaining views of the river and surrounding area. 
  • Providing riverfront retail/dining opportunities: respondents mentioned wanting a reason to stop and spend time and money in the area with opportunities to visit local businesses along the river. This included mention of increased business opportunities facing the riverfront and opportunities for current businesses to improve/create a riverside frontage for the future. 
  • Incorporating programmable spaces: participants expressed that they would like to see the creation of a public space for community gatherings, activities, live music, events, vendor opportunities and a place to have some fun. Some participants also mentioned the space would be appropriate for mobile/pop-up vendor opportunities.
  • Relocating garbage bins: although many respondents understood the need for local businesses to access garbage bins, many agreed that the commercial garbage bins need to be relocated or improved.