Many citizens of Lacombe, over recent weeks, have expressed their concerns regarding the possible relocation of the Kinsmen Ball Park diamonds to allow for cemetery expansion.
I would like to point out some facts in this matter in order to alleviate any misconceptions people may have in this regard.
The current playing fields were originally identified as cemetery land, and later changed by a previous council in order that the ball diamonds could be developed by the Lacombe Kinsmen Club.
The Fairview Cemetery has approximately a year’s worth of plots remaining and any land the town has found is either unsuitable for a cemetery, is cost prohibitive or does not have accessible roads to accommodate safe travel for funeral processions.
The Lacombe Kinsmen Club has entered into discussions with town council and has agreed to work with town administration to create an implementation plan to construct a new recreation area. Over time, this plan will replace all diamonds connected to the cemetery and meet the needs of the Lacombe Kinsmen Club and the citizens of the town of Lacombe.
Council has met with adjacent homeowners to the proposed cemetery expansion.
Administration staff met on site with these home owners who agreed to the expansion of the cemetery, providing proper screening with trees is done.
On July 13 at 6:45 p.m., members of the public are invited to a public hearing in council chambers regarding the removal of the municipal reserve designation from this parcel of land.
The upcoming development of the Willow Ridge recreation site has allowed council to consider the idea of relocating all the ball diamonds to this location.
The conversion of the existing Kinsmen ball diamonds would take place over a 50-year to 75-year time period. What this means to ball players is that should the town commence the construction of ball diamonds at the proposed Willow Ridge site, we would have two or three existing ball diamonds at the current location, plus four new diamonds, fully operational within two to three years at the Willow Ridge recreational area.
Council has examined the opportunities that could arise with the additional playing fields at our disposal over the next 25 years.
We have considered the planning implications to the taxpayers of expanding the current cemetery versus buying new land in the county.
We are a progressive council who consider the needs of our current and future citizens paramount to the success and vibrancy of this community.
The future belongs to all — both the old and the young. We do listen and we do care.
Mayor Judy Gordon
Town of Lacombe