District annual report reviews 2016 and charts 2017

Six goals were highlighted.

The District of Hope released its 2016 Annual Report on May 25 which summarizes last year and looks forth to 2017.

Of particular interest are their objectives and progress measures. In 2016, the document highlighted six objectives including repairs and upgrades to the pollution control centre (PCC), progress of the Station House project, Othello Road stabilization, public transit, Coquihalla River Park improvements and adopting the Integrated Official Community Plan (IOCP).

Except for the IOCP objective, all objectives were carried forward to 2017’s objectives. The IOCP objective is listed as approved and adopted.

Two objectives are in progress. On public transit, a Hope to Agassiz bus service will begin in September 2017. The PCC has a scheduled completion of 2018.

A new objective for 2017 is the Richmond Hill pedestrian and cycle connector to downtown Hope. The strategy listed to get this funded is to leverage federal and provincial grants while also saving for District partial funding. Currently, the District is attempting to complete engineering and other works to make the project shovel ready, so that they can apply for a grant.

Othello Road stabilization also requires a grant for “substantial road redesign and repair.” The District’s currentlsteps are to make temporary repairs and complete engineering studies before applying for a grant.

The Station House and Coquihalla River Park projects represent the objectives facing challenges. In his mayor’s message, Mayor Wilfried Vicktor said that Station House “continues to be a ‘stretch goal’ for the District with the confirmed way ahead yet to be finalized in 2017.”

The strategy to move forth the Station House project has not changed. The District said they are pursuing a combination of District and grant funds while leveraging volunteers. They are aiming to finalize the project’s scope, budget and approach.

A grant that could go to either project is the Kinder Morgan Community Benefits Agreement, worth $500,000. Initially earmarked in writing for the park project’s second phase, which includes an expansion of the skate park, council has discussed reallocating that money to the Station House project, although council has not made a motion to finalize that.

In 2016, the strategy to achieve the improvements in the park is listed as a combination of District and grant funding, leveraging volunteers, but has been changed in 2017 to a donation-based approach to achieve incremental improvements with volunteers. This year’s outcomes include improved signage, fencing, bike park maintenance and site improvements.

Hope Standard