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DARP officially kicks off first phase of plan

The Downtown Area Revitalization Plan is in its first phase of reconstructing the downtown core.

Calgary based company O2 Planning and Design is developing a five-step plan that will see Lloydminster’s downtown core improved. Part of the plan includes public engagement on the company’s vision that will mean online surveys and public houses, as well as walking tours for residents.

Mayor Gerald Aalbers says it’s very important that people have the opportunity to share their thoughts and ideas because this city is made up of a vision of 32,000 people.

“If you don’t go downtown for a reason why don’t you go downtown please tell us that. If you like downtown why do you like downtown? What would you like to see enhanced downtown? If you’re a business owner what would you like to see come downtown to be an adjacent business? I think everyone has an interest because the downtown plays a very important part in our city.”

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City Councillor Michael Diachuk says there are some challenges the City’s downtown faces mainly due to the lack of traffic.

“Without some of that population that makes it difficult around businesses, where you have to drive downtown versus people living in that area simply stepping out their back door and going to a restaurant or shopping. That population density needs to be enhanced to really make it attractive to live downtown and secondarily provide the retailers with the customers they need to survive.”

The next step for the design company is visioning, where they will review existing plans and data. The complete vision for the downtown will be delivered next year in May.

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