Council recognizes veterans

Veterans will have a new commemorative plaza to visit on a busy downtown corner. They’ll also have the chance to park on the street for free to visit the pedestrian-friendly plaza, slated to be built next year along Ross Street and west of 49th Avenue. On Monday,

Veterans will have a new commemorative plaza to visit on a busy downtown corner.

They’ll also have the chance to park on the street for free to visit the pedestrian-friendly plaza, slated to be built next year along Ross Street and west of 49th Avenue.

On Monday, Red Deer city council endorsed the plaza as part of the city’s Veteran Recognition Program. They had previously supported a capital budget of $1.3 million to build the plaza, and now the work can get underway to design the plaza, which could include lighting and commemorative benches.

The plaza would jut out from the sidewalk to include the monument of the unknown soldier, erected in the middle of Ross Street in 1922.

“It gives us a place to share memories. . . and to create story telling,” said Councillor Cindy Jefferies.

Two lanes of traffic on the north side of the cenotaph are currently shut down while a highrise is being built. Once the plaza is built, there will still only be two lanes directly in front of it.

Councillor Frank Wong opposed the motion to support the plaza because he said he’s already received traffic complaints there.

“By doing this park, we’ll be creating a traffic problem,” said Wong. “Not everyone is supporting this.”

After lengthy debate, council also supported a year-round parking fee exemption for all veterans. The city would provide a parking pass to anyone who has a veteran’s licence plate.

Bobbi McCoy, vice-president of the Alberta-Northwest Territories region for the Royal Canadian Legion, asked the city for the parking meter exemption. Many veterans have told her they wouldn’t apply for the pass, but it is still there for anyone who chooses.

“It’s a small gratitude compared to the big sacrifices they have made,” said McCoy of Red Deer.

Inspections and Licensing manager Paul Meyette said a parking pass would prevent any risk of abuse, not from veterans, but possibly from family who might be able to drive a vehicle with veteran licence plates on them.

Jefferies voted down the parking pass idea because she’d rather see money put into a program where the memories of veterans could live on, such as the sharing of stories between veterans and the younger generation.

Councilllor Lorna Watkinson-Zimmer also voted against the parking exemption after speaking with several veterans.

“They were concerned about possible resentment (from the rest of the public),” she said.

ltester@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Rural communities could face policing bills

Province considering getting smaller and rural communities to pick up a portion of policing costs

Random Acts of Green Canadian tour comes to Red Deer

Red Deerians are being encouraged to lessen their impact on the environment.… Continue reading

Free blood testing for HIV, Hep C, syphilis offered Thursday in Red Deer

Anyone can drop by from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Bower Ponds pavilion

Red Deer economy bouncing back but slowly: report

While Red Deer’s economy has been in recovery mode for the past… Continue reading

Red Deer cyclist dead after being hit by vehicle

A Red Deer cyclist was killed when he was struck by a… Continue reading

WATCH: 2019 Canada Winter Games will leave a lasting legacy, say organizers

It leaves Red Deer with the infrastructure and confidence to host future such events

Your community calendar

Wednesday Central Alberta Historical Society annual general meeting is 6 p.m. at… Continue reading

Couche-Tard wants to be a player in the sale of cannabis

LAVAL, Que. — Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. wants to be one of the… Continue reading

Michael Dawe: A safe supply of water has long been a priority for Red Deer

The oldest part of the Red Deer water treatment plant on 54th… Continue reading

New parent charged in admissions scam, linked to $400K bribe

BOSTON — A woman accused of paying $400,000 to get her son… Continue reading

Canadian stars Virtue, Moir say in video they’re “stepping away” from ice dancing

Canadian ice dancing stars Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir say they are… Continue reading

Bruce Cockburn avoids impulse to get political with lyric-less new album

TORONTO — If anyone is looking for activist folk singer Bruce Cockburn… Continue reading

13 seasons in, stars reflect on success of ‘Heartland,’ Canada’s ‘comfort food’

HIGH RIVER, Alta. — Alberta-born actor Shaun Johnston had already had a… Continue reading

N.S. senior whose birthday card request drew international response dies

SYDNEY, N.S. — A Nova Scotia widower who received thousands of birthday… Continue reading

Most Read