The city will seek funding for flood mitigation work at Riverside Park.
On Tuesday, council unanimously approved an application for community emergency preparedness funds, provincial dollars administered via the Union of BC Municipalities to make communities more resilient in responding to emergencies.
The city will apply for $750,000 to complete erosion protection and riverbank upgrades in the downtown park.
The plan is to raise the riverbank and Rivers Trail through grading, in addition to removing trees and installing rip-rap.
City civic operations director Jen Fretz explained the flood risk in the park is equal or greater than what is has been in the past, due to climate change science pointing to more extremes. In the future, residents could notice the river lower or higher than in the past. The city noted concern for sanitary infrastructure in Riverside Park, in the event of flooding.
The city has also applied for about $6 million in grant funding through the federal government’s Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program for a Riverside Park rehabilitation project, including repairs and/or replacement of the spray park and a new refrigerated ice skating rink.
That funding request did not include money for the flood mitigation work. Fretz said the city has not yet heard back on the status of those requests.
The city calls the flood protection work a “top priority” and it will be completed with or without the grant funding, paid for otherwise using city stormwater funds.