Castlegar: a thriving hub of the West Kootenay
The City of Castlegar has big plans for the community in 2013
Castlegar serves as the commercial hub of the West Kootenay in British Columbia. With the West Kootenay Regional Airport, Selkirk College's main campus, a positive business community and a mecca for outdoor recreation and nature experiences, the city is thriving.
Kootenay Business sat down with Mayor Lawrence Chernoff to find out what initiatives the City was successful in achieving in 2012 and what he and city council look forward to accomplishing in 2013.
What stood out in 2012
The City of Castlegar has long sought the development of a City-owned 37-acre parcel adjacent to the West Kootenay Regional Airport. Accordingly, city council undertook a $3.2-million infrastructure project with Provincial assistance to extend the city's water and sewer infrastructure across the Columbia River to service those lands. The servicing was completed on time and on budget.
The City also undertook construction of an ultraviolet water treatment plant to provide safer drinking water to the community. This $800,000-plus project further strengthens Castlegar's infrastructure for the existing community and for future economic development.
Initiatives for 2013
With the completion of the Millennium Park Master Plan, council will move forward with a key project of the master plan: the development and construction of a $1.2-million natural pond water feature at Millennium Park. The feature will include three large natural ponds connected by water chutes. In addition, the park’s beach areas will be enlarged and new fish habitat will be created.
Funding has been secured by city council to undertake the development of a new navigational approach program at the airport to enable planes that are properly equipped to achieve landings in inclement weather.
City council has sought to undertake new community enhancements to create a more attractive Castlegar. These enhancements may include extending support for the very popular Sculpture Walk program, improving downtown decorative lighting, replacing and planting new trees along the streets—and street landscaping where appropriate—and possibly switching the city’s streetlights to energy-efficient LED streetlights.
Castlegar's council will also be continuing to diversify the city’s economic base through a building revitalization tax-incentive program, increased community marketing and working actively with industry to build in Castlegar. New development, such as the recently announced West Kootenay Fortis Operational Centre, will be encouraged.