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Council has a change of heart about platform

City council has decided to have another look at funding the renovation of a hazardous viewing platform at Dick Murphy Park. - Kristen Douglas/The Mirror
City council has decided to have another look at funding the renovation of a hazardous viewing platform at Dick Murphy Park.
— image credit: Kristen Douglas/The Mirror

Council changed its mind Tuesday night on going ahead with repairing a hazardous viewing platform at Dick Murphy Park.

At the August 12 council meeting, council – with the exception of Mayor Walter Jakeway – voted in favour of city staff either renovating or rebuilding (up to $50,000) the walkway which comes off the northwest end of Tyee Spit.

But at Tuesday night’s council meeting, that motion was re-considered and changed after Coun. Andy Adams questioned giving staff the go-ahead.

“After last Wednesday, attending the Tyee Club’s opening of their new docks and getting a feel of what their costs were, looking at this motion to give staff the green light to spend up to $50,000 I think needs to be re-visited,” Adams said. “I think we need to really get a better handle as to what the cost is.”

Adams noted that all seven members of council were in favour of undertaking the necessary repair work when the issue first came up at a Committee of the Whole meeting July 22.

But when the item appeared on the agenda for council’s August 12 regular meeting, Mayor Jakeway changed his mind and voted against moving forward with the renovations based on concerns about the cost.

Adams agreed that Jakeway’s concerns were valid.

“It’s just a matter of what’s the best bang for the buck, so to speak, whether it’s to remove the platform or re-build it,” Adams said.

“But I’m looking for staff to have a sober second look at this as to how to mitigate some of the expenses.

Councillors Mary Storry, Ryan Mennie, Larry Samson and Ron Kerr, who was acting as mayor, agreed and revised council’s original motion to read that city staff come back to council with a report on the projected costs to renovate, re-build or remove the platform.

Coun. Larry Samson, who brought the issue forward last month after noticing the platform’s poor condition, agreed with Adams that further avenues should be investigated.

“I think…that maybe we can do better and I understand that there may be some serious structural needs that need to be looked at,” Samson said.

An inspection of the platform has found the support timbers are in poor condition and the platform is deteriorating.

It’s been cordoned off with caution tape for the past couple of months for fears the platform could collapse if too many people were to use it at the same time.

Adams said there’s no way the city can leave the platform in the shape that it’s in.

“I appreciate councillor Samson’s initiative in bringing it forward because it is a safety liability issue for the city in the condition that it stands in right now,” Adams said.

Samson said he’s eager for staff to come back with its recommendations but added that he would not support removing the platform.

“I look forward to the staff report, if anything, we want to make it better than before,” Samson said. “I’ll say up front, I’m against taking it down.”

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