Lake renovations delayed by warm weather

Improvements to Whonnock Lake stretching to August

Workers are finishing the day-use area at Whonnock Lake

It’s a few weeks behind, but by summer’s end, Whonnock Lake Park will have its first stage of renovations complete.

That wasn’t the plan.

The initial intent was to have the $900,000 refit done by the end of June. But construction and material delays, combined with hot weather prevented planting of grass and shrubs, putting the project behind schedule.

“The intent was not to be working through the summer,” said Sylvia Pendl, with parks and leisure services.

Target date for construction completion is now mid-August.

“We never anticipated this kind of weather, this kind of heat. We just can’t plant grass or plants or trees.”

Workers are currently finishing the day-use are, moving the gazebo, making new pathways and improving the playground. Work has been done to improve drainage so that picnic and play areas no longer get soaked.

After hearing from the residents, the department also reduced the number of trees that had to be chopped down in order to do the renovations.

Phase 1 of the project also includes better pathways and lighting, expanded parking and a clearer definition of where pedestrians and vehicles should go.

“The effort has been to separate pedestrian and vehicle traffic and make it safer so there’s not as much conflict,” Pendl said.

The parking lot by Whonnock Lake Centre and the east parking lot remain open, as are all the stalls in the old campground sites.

“There’s plenty of room for people to access the site.”

While the work will be done by mid-August, some parts could remain closed until the fall and wetter weather makes it feasible for planting vegetation.

Phase 2 of the project starts in 2017 and will include washrooms, concession building and a caretaker’s residence.

That will push the total cost for the improvements to $1.4 million.

 

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