Duncan’s city council is considering using the empty lot at 135 Kenneth St., located next to Volume One book store, for a temporary parking lot.
Council gave the green light to a staff recommendation at the council meeting on Oct. 7 that a draft parking lot layout and cost estimates for an interim parking lot at the location be developed, and for it to be considered during budget deliberations for 2020.
The city recently purchased the property for the primary purpose of securing a permanent pedestrian connection from Kenneth Street to Ingram Street.
“Council is now in a position to consider future uses for the property in addition to the pedestrian connection,” said Peter de Verteuil, the city’s CAO, in a report.
“The city is soon going to undertake a parking capacity survey to attempt to quantify just how much additional parking is needed in and around the downtown core. While most people would agree that there needs to be additional parking capacity created, it’s not clear how much will satisfy the current and future demand.”
De Verteuil said staff are recommending the city explore a less costly interim parking lot design that does not commit the property to parking in the medium term, in case other parking capacity alternatives are identified in the downtown area.
Mayor Michelle Staples said she’s not opposed to a temporary parking lot at the site, but she’d like to see other uses for it in the long term.
“It’s in a prime location and I’d like to see some other options explores, like a mixed commercial/residential development,” she said.
“I don’t want the downtown full of parking lots. It wouldn’t be a desirable atmosphere.”
Council decided to refer the topic of identifying other potential uses for 135 Kenneth St., while still providing a statutory right of way for the pedestrian connection, to a future committee of the whole meeting.