1. The South End Community has a vision for Nicol Street outlined in their newly created Neighbourhood Plan. If elected, what actions would you recommend to the city to transform Nicol Street from an outdated highway to a vibrant urban corridor?
If elected I would recommend to the city staff that they work with South End Community to continue the revitalization of the Nicole Street Corridor. This could be accelerated if the CON worked with property owners when building permits are taken out for projects along this corridor.
More home based business should be encouraged – including professional offices, healthy food outlets, corner stores and other environmentally sound activities. If there were proper incentives, vacant lots and unsightly premises would be built on or cleaned up.
I have seen a real change in this area over the last few years with the completion of new houses and general repairs and remodelling of existing homes and businesses.
I would encourage CON staff to listen to the South End Community Association when dealing with applications such as the proposed 24 hour 7-11 operation. The CON currently has the Parks personal taking care of the landscaping, but again more could be done.
— Murray McNab
I have looked very carefully at your plan, which I have to tell you, is absolutely fantastic, and is something both the City planners and yourselves should be extremely proud of!
What we need to do now is determine how to get started. We will need to get staff to develop an implementation plan with budget estimates and a funding formula. If I am elected, I will make it a high priority goal to work with staff and Council to fast track this very important project.
Now that more traffic is using the Parkway, Nicol Street could be turned into an attractive road, reduced to one lane in each direction, plus cycling lanes, lots of trees, better (and replaced) fencing, bus turn-outs for the city and Greyhound buses (preferably with some shelters), added street banners, and more. I named this issue as a part of my platform a month ago. See Issue #10 at my website.
On examining the recommendations and suggestions in the Urban Design Framework & Guidelines, there are many, many propositions that will help refresh Nicol Street and turn it into an exciting urban corridor.
I especially like the widened sidewalks and ask if they can’t be widened a bit further, especially on the northern portion — the ‘gateway’ as its known. Building setbacks, articulation along building faces and mandatory awnings are also attractive and have potential to increase pedestrian use. I didn’t see any reference to ensuring building heights vary along a block so you don’t end up with a long row of ‘walls’.A mix of architectural styles — from faux heritage to post modern and art deco would be exciting to see as well.
It is an absolute ‘must’ that no street entry parking be considered in the future.
I have a view in opposition to the recommendations though — I would promote the inclusion of large scale public art in the Nicol Street plan, much like Vancouver has recently done on Knight Street — a corridor somewhat similar to Nicol. The concept of Brownfield redevelopment to spur economic growth should be expedited.
— Brian Fillmore
I strongly agree with the concept of turning Nicol Street into a vibrant corridor. I would certainly support and encourage development proposals that would contribute to fulfilling the South End Neighbourhood Plan.
To attract developers, I would investigate extending the current downtown core exemption from development cost charges to include Nicol Street. An exemption from DCCs would provide a significant incentive to developers and investors, and should trigger the kind of economic activity the South End needs.
At the same time, we don’t want just any development — we want those developments that contribute to the community’s vision. For instance, I would support an amendment to the business licence restricting business hours for the proposed 7/11 convenience store on Nicol Street if the store’s 24/7 operating hours become a nuisance to the neighbourhood.