The Morrisburg Waterfront Implementation Committee decided to think big when planning the future of the Morrisburg waterfront, the sum of implementing their plan, in full, could cost $7.4 million.
The Morrisburg Waterfront Phase 1 Concept Plan was presented to South Dundas council at their final meeting of 2013, by lead consultants Mark Thompson Brandt Architect and Associates Inc. “We realize it’s a large vision, but it needs to be that,” said Randy Veinotte, who spoke on behalf to the committee.
“I think the public has a real appetite to do something down there at the waterfront and this plan should help you by providing a good blue print to help you as council members to move things forward.”
“The committee truly feels what is here in this plan is appropriate for the community,” said Veinotte.Veinotte told council of the input and feedback that the committee had in the planning process and that this plan truly reflects the committees vision for the waterfront.
The focus of the first phase of the plan is the dock area. Pathways and key elements including a welcome centre, café with a roof top terrace, and waterfront look-out tower, are all part of the design which provides a strong and visible arrival identity to the area.
The plan not only works to define and address how people arrive, move through and experience the place, it also takes into account problem solving measures for areas of concern, namely parking. “With this plan, we’ve added about 160 parking spaces, which is a fairly dramatic increase,” said Mark Brandt, who made the presentation. That includes 40 double-long spaces for boats and trailers. “We’re putting the parking in the right places,” he added.
With a visual presentation which included a virtual tour of the proposal, Brandt said, “This design is uniquely of Morrisburg.”“This is a large vision, but we set out very deliberately to do that,” said Brandt. “It was important for the committee to set out a big vision that speaks to pride this community has in its waterfront.”“This is great work,” commented South Dundas councillor Archie Mellan, adding that he hopes the public input about this plan is positive. “It is very impressive. Funding it will be the only issue.”
“It is a park of dreams,” added councillor Evonne Delegarde. “There has been a lot of great input by the committee. Funding will be the tell tale sign of getting things done.”
“This is an ambitious concept. It would be wonderful to see it in place,” said councillor Jim Graham. He added that the $7.4 million price tag isn’t out of line when you compare it to the cost of something like building a new arena.“
The plan is ambitious, but not unattainable,” said South Dundas deputy mayor Jim Locke. “This community has a great ability to pull together when it decides to and to get things done.”
“I really hope we don’t hear a negative reaction from the public first,” said South Dundas mayor Steven Byvelds. “If this plan is what the community wants, it can happen.”