An above-ground overhaul of Government Street is on the horizon to coincide with a major upgrade to below-ground water services along the downtown Victoria thoroughfare.
“The city is going to be doing a massive water-main replacement as part of our climate-adaptation and seismic-resiliency planning,” said Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps.
Federal funding of $15 million has been secured, she said, with work to be done from Wharf Street/Humboldt Street to Pandora Avenue in 2023-24.
“The idea is to be prepared once that work is finished for basically a refurbishment of Government Street based on the direction in council’s strategic plan, which is to turn Government into a pedestrian-priority zone,” Helps said.
Jeff Bray, executive director of the Downtown Victoria Business Association, said he is happy to see the city is co-ordinating civic projects to minimize disruption.
“What we’ve always said at the DVBA with respect to Government Street is that any changes to the configuration of traffic flow really should work in concert with what business needs are there,” he said. “There are lots of issues that are impacted, deliveries for instance.
“We’re not for or against the idea of expanding the pedestrian space in and of itself, but if it’s done so because people think it’s a really cool idea, but it’s not taking into account the needs of the types of businesses there then we have some concerns.”
Discussions will consider more than pedestrian use, Helps said.
“It’s way bigger than that,” she said.
Edited by Victoria Watcher, 24 February 2021 - 06:54 AM.