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Readers weigh in on the pros and cons of replacing Clover Point parking with a park
Victoria City Council is weighing a proposal to replace the current driving and parking loop at Clover Point, along Dallas Road, with a park that would be mostly closed to vehicles aside from a drop-off point and some accessible parking spots. The proposal has been met with backlash from some residents and support from others. We asked readers to weigh in and were flooded with responses—below is a selection of the perspectives that were shared with us.
Cold and windy
I just want to say that it may be a good idea in theory to open the space for picnickers but it is often cold and windy at Clover Point. Not so conducive for that sort of thing. It’s great for flying a kite though and eating your take-out from the warmth of your car, watching the sunrise or stormy waves. Picnics are better inland, in the park (if there is no worry about discarded needles), or on higher ground, along Dallas Road. I hope Victoria council will consider this.
Park should be inclusive
The park needs to be inclusive for everyone. A design should include a seasonal multi use park that allows for summer activities with lounge chairs and picnic tables May to October but in the many months of storms and wind, have parking spots for people who may be the frail elderly and those who are not hardy. Increase parking for the disabled and mothers with small children. This park should accommodate the people who love to storm watch in the winter and who are only able to enjoy nature from a car.
Not enough parking on Dallas Road
As residents very near to Clover Point we have concerns about the proposed change to the number of parking spaces. If anyone is familiar with the area, they will certainly know that parking alone Dallas Road fills up very quickly. Before Clover Point was closed to traffic, due to ongoing construction, the parking area was constantly full. Families were playing, couples were taking walks, people were jogging and these were people that did not necessarily live in the area but were able to enjoy the waterfront because there was a place to park!
With the proposed plan of only four parking spots, our mayor and city councillors, are once again, is not thinking clearly about the needs or wants of the whole population. Since Clover Point has been closed to traffic, parking has become much more difficult on side streets around the area for local residents. Where are the people, using a proposed "drop off" spot, going to park? Clover Point and the water front along Dallas Road is a beautiful place for the population of Victoria to enjoy. Leave the parking as it is/was. Install some benches and a few picnic tables but don't turn Clover Point into an area that is not easily accessible to the whole population of Victoria and that includes people that drive cars.
Thank you for reading our letter and hopefully it will help you, our mayor and councillors, to realize that your proposed plans do not fulfill the wants of the population of Victoria.
Wendy and Eric Dryden
Fresh air, versus sitting in an idling car, is becoming the norm
The publication of the fine aerial view conceptual sketch for the conversion of car centric Clover Point to a pedestrian, cyclist, outdoor park is fabulous.
We live in James Bay and have witnessed the huge increase in folks of all ages and physical abilities enjoying the new multiuser path linking Ogden Point with Clover Point. I believe it has become a destination.
Please pass on my thanks to the designers of the proposed Clover Point conversion as well as the multiuser pathway. Fresh air, versus sitting in an idling car is becoming the new norm and these designs encourage enjoying the healthy outdoors.
The well used funds for Clover Point could be the redirected funds from the proposed closing of the curved roadway between Beacon Hill and Mile Zero greenspace. I feel that closure will only bring congestion to the intersection of Douglas and Dallas.
Clover Point—as it is—is valuable for mental health
I am a companion for seniors. I bring a minivan with seniors to clover point and we are able to either sit, or safely navigate the area, then get in the vehicle and drive away. With the proposed amount of parking spots this will no longer be a possibility. Removing parking spots does not make people sell their cars, it makes them stay home. I can wheel my clients down to Clover Point but I would never get them back out.
My son and I were also able to fly kites there on the weekends, and never once had a close call with a car. We respected where vehicles were and vehicles respected where the kids were. To assume that we can’t continue that in the future is a little confusing to me.
I love many of the changes this glorious town has made, I realize the pandemic has put a little cloud over us, and I don’t blame our council for that. (Obviously). I do believe changing Clover Point is unnecessary and dangerous, excluding many from easily experiencing the beauty of our coastline, forcing those who have relied on this area as therapy or just a place to breathe to find other areas to cope (there aren’t many). We are all going through so much right now, we can’t afford to lose an area as valuable as Clover Point.
I sincerely hope council gives consideration to what is best for those of us trying to survive in this economy, this town, this never ending pandemic, and leave us a single place to bring our selves, sit in our warm cars and enjoy our beautiful landscape.