July 31, 2015 - 6:30 PM
WEST KELOWNA - You don’t often see playgrounds close but West Kelowna is doing just that with the removal of Horizon Park.
And the city says there has been little opposition to the removal of a slide, swingset and some spring rides for little kids.
“We haven’t had any calls,” city spokesperson Jason Luciw says.
The city says the aging facility was deteriorating, hard to find and little used except by young people who vandalized the park.
“There was frequent reports of vandalism. Someone lit the plastic slide on fire," Luciw says. "The equipment no longer meets Canadian Safety Association standards. The city concluded that it would be best to remove the playground.”
Luciw says there are two parks, Moonbeam Park and Rose Valley Elementary, both with much more advanced playgrounds than Horizon, within easy walking distance.
Crews have already removed the playground equipment. Plans are to leave the park in a natural state while city staff investigate possible amenities for the area, such as benches.
“Staff made the operational decision to remove the park based on an assessment of the playground. It was no longer safe," Luciw says.
While the city is losing a playground, it’s not losing playground capacity. Playgrounds are being replaced over the next few months at John Dupuis Park, Shannon Ridge Park, Kinsmen Park and Last Mountain Park, he says.
And an entirely new playground, valued at over $100,000 is being installed at Memorial Park.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015