The Port McNeill waterfront on a beautiful sunny day. (Bill McQuarrie photo)

The Port McNeill waterfront on a beautiful sunny day. (Bill McQuarrie photo)

Waterfront Playground Proposal receives backing from Port McNeill council

In favour of the motion were Wickstrom, Baron and Coun. Shelley Downey.


Hands went up in the air and important decisions were made.

Port McNeill council voted at its April 13 meeting to move ahead with the playground proposal put forward by the Waterfront Community Playgroup Project committee.

Coun. Ann-Marie Baron, acknowledging that there has been some confusion as to what the group was actually proposing, sought clarification from the playgroup committee at a joint meeting held the previous week with the Harbour Advisory Group (HAG).

Summarizing that meeting, Baron stated that in order to accommodate the three pieces of equipment needed for the playground component, a 30×30 foot space of parkland would be required.

Site locations able to accommodate those needs included: The area where the WFP guesthouse was once located: An area above Parking Lot B and: The green space beyond the ferry at the end of the harbour path on Beach Drive.

No information was provided on space requirements for the separate adult fitness site.

According to Baron, HAG advised everyone that there was nothing within the proposal that was contrary to the park’s current use or would negatively impact future planning.

However, she went on to explain that HAG will need additional location assessments from the playgroup committee to ensure that drainage, lighting, landscaping and division/barrier plans between green space and the waterfront are properly addressed at each of those possible locations.

Based on that meeting, HAG advised council it was supportive of the playgroup’s vision for the harbour.

Given the level of community discussion and concerns around this project, Mayor Gaby Wickstrom felt it would be appropriate to appoint a select committee to monitor every step along the way and report back to and seek approval of council on all aspects of the project.

Citing unresolved concerns over safety, parking, displaced [current] users and the continued lack of drawings and plans, Coun. Ryan Mitchell felt there was not enough information at this time to support the proposal.

Pointing to the work done by council in 2018 to develop an overall set of strategic priorities, Coun. Derek Koel said while he was, “probably in favour” of the concept, he would vote against it because it was, “not part of our strategic priorities.”

Council moved, “To approve and manage the [funding] application for the Canada Healthy Communities Grant and direct staff to work with the waterfront group in completing and submitting the application.”

In favour of the motion were Wickstrom, Baron and Coun. Shelley Downey. Opposed were Koel and Mitchell.

A concurrent motion to form a select committee to oversee the proposed project was brought forward and received with unanimous approval.

Have a story tip? Email:
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

City CouncilNews

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A boat caught on fire this morning (May 11) in Port Hardy. (Adam Harding/Port Hardy Fire Rescue Facebook photo)
Fishing boat catches fire in Port Hardy, owner’s quick thinking puts out flames

The incident is a good reminder to always have a working fire extinguisher onboard your boat

School District 85 logo
Fort Rupert Elementary School gets funding from MusiCounts

The $1 million investment will support 95 schools

Agree or disagree with North Island Rising? Write a letter to the editor at and we will publish it online and in print.
McQuarrie: Budget meeting drama caused by unruly councillor

It was an amazing and unexpected response to what should have been… Continue reading

The medical clinic building in Port McNeill. (Bill McQuarrie photo)
Medical clinic gives update on health care in Port McNeill

The town appears to be ‘closer to a new and sustainable medical model for our town’

New electric buses are coming to school districts. (Submitted photo)
New electric school buses will drive North Island forward

Travel on electric school buses is smoother, quieter, and healthier than traditional diesel buses

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

Two-year-old Kashius Weme rides at the Steve Smith Memorial Bike Park in Nanaimo on Tuesday, May 11. The youngster’s precocious bike-riding ability is already attracting cycle sponsors. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
2-year-old bike rider on Vancouver Island already attracting cycle sponsors

Nanaimo’s Kashius Weme has a knack for extreme cycle sports

Keith MacIntyre - BC Libertarian
Penticton’s Keith MacIntyre new leader of the B.C. Libertarian Party

The Penticton businessman was voted in by members of the party on May 8

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a 'person of interest' in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
Man sought in suspicious Kootenay death found in Lake Country

Philip Toner is a person of interest in the death of Brenda Ware

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP reported to 287 mental health calls between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 1. (Black Press files)
‘It’s not the police’s responsibility to deal with mental health calls’: Vernon RCMP

RCMP remind public to take care of mental health and well-being, while better solutions are sought

Thompson Rivers University campus is in Kamloops, B.C. (KTW file photo)
Thompson Rivers the 1st B.C. university to supply free menstrual products

The university will offer the products this September

Fraser Health is using ‘targeted’ vaccination clinics in high-risk areas of the Lower Mainland. (Fraser Health photo)
B.C.’s COVID-19 decrease continues, 515 new cases Tuesday

426 seriously ill people in hospital, up from 415 Monday

A scene from the Schoolhouse Squat from October 2018, where Alliance Against Displacement members and supporters occupied the Rutherford Elementary School site, advocating for people experiencing homelessness. (News Bulletin file)
‘Schoolhouse Squat’ activists get conditional discharge in Nanaimo school occupation

Ivan Donald Drury, Tingchun (Listen) Chen sentenced in provincial court in Nanaimo

The site of Sunfest, Laketown Ranch, will be open for camping this summer. (Citizen file)
Sunfest country music bash won’t be shining on B.C. in 2021

Annual Vancouver Island Festival cancelled due to COVID-19, along with Laketown Shakedown

Most Read