Parks and Open Spaces of Gabriola News

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Monday, April 15 2013

Tuesday, April 2, the Gabriola Parks and Open Spaces Committee met with Regional District of Nanaimo Area B Director Howard Houle and Elaine McCulloch, RDN Parks Planner.

The following are news bites from the meeting.

South Road stairs almost done

Work on the stairs to South Road Beach are almost completed (handrails were missing as of Monday, April 1) and the RDN anticipates re-opening that staircase to the public this spring.


Rollo McClay parking lot expansion pushed to 2014

Howard explained as the RDN went over budget (and over schedule) on replacing the pond liner at Rollo McClay park, “we’re holding off [expanding the parking lot] to avoid a tax increase.”

The long-term plan is to gravel the main parking lot located outside the lower outfield fence and expand that same lot to allow for more vehicles to park there.

Presently people are parking out on the road at the main lot and on Ritchie Road because there isn’t enough room in the lot. Expanding the lot (and improving lot conditions) will alleviate the parking issue over on Ritchie Road.

Ivory Way gate to Descanso Bay Regional Park to be locked at night during busy camping season

There is a water access at the end of Ivory Way, 66 feet wide almost all the way to the water.  (seen right in photo) The Descanso Bay campground operator and the RDN have agreed to have a gate installed between the water access. The gate will be opened and closed within the hours of the campground, during the busier months of the year. 

Howard said, “The park operator had concerns with us opening that [gateway] –security concerns – with it open. So during the busy season it will be locked, closed and opened.”

The rest of the year the gateway will be left open for the public to travel between Ivory Way and the regional park.

South Road access to 707 to get new gate

Howard explained the RDN is having problems with people accessing the 707 area with motorized vehicles through the road which cuts through property owned by islander Dean Gaudry.

Part of the problem is the gate which had been installed by the RDN was further up the road and vehicles were able to get around the gate.

Dean had installed a gate on his road but it was damaged and has been left hanging open.

Howard said, “We’d like to get permission to install that gate. Basically it is to put the gate where it was.”

POSAC member Randy Young proposed the motion that the RDN “install the gate at the point of minimum access on Dean Gaudry’s road going into the 707.”

Keys to the gate will be provided to Fire Chief Rick Jackson, RDN parks staff and Dean in order to gain access to the roadway.

Once the gate is installed, Randy proposed to install signs at the top and bottom of the road indicating the road is closed to motorized vehicles.