A covered bus stop complete with a mobile charging station, library exchange, First Nations artwork and much more could be coming to Lantzville.
Lantzville councillors unanimously authorized staff to begin working with a volunteer group aiming to install a bus shelter at 7217 Lantzville Rd. during a council meeting on Monday night. Councillors also approved paying 50 per cent of the cost of the bus shelter in the event the volunteer group could not raise enough money to pay or the shelter themselves.
According to a recent staff report, the proposed bus stop would be located out front of Riso Restaurant and would be constructed with low-maintenance, durable materials. The proposed bus shelter will have solar panels, the ability to recharge mobile devices, a digital photo display showcasing historical photos of Lantzville, a clock, a library exchange shelve and interior lighting.
Two posts adorned with Coast Salish artwork from a Snaw-Naw-As artist are also planned for the shelter, which, according to the report, is intended to look more like artwork than a standard bus shelter. The shelter is expected to cost $6,050 to construct, would require $500 in year-round maintenance and would be under district control according to the report, which also says that design work has already been carried out by Dan Fell of Sorensen Trilogy Engineering, who waived the all fees associated with the work.
The project has been spearheaded by local resident Ian Savage, who has been working with the district and the Regional District of Nanaimo for months. An independent volunteer group made up of five members was also established and will be responsible for raising the $6,050 required for the shelter.
Although Lantzville councillors agreed to fund 50 per cent of the project should the volunteers fail to raise the money, Frank Limshue, the district’s community planner, told the News Bulletin that the volunteer group has as much time as it needs to raise the money because there was no time restriction attached to the motion approved by councillors.
“It is not tied to a grant or anything like that,” he said.
Speaking to the News Bulletin afterward, Coun. Bob Colclough, who is Lantzville’s representative on the RDN’s board, called the bus shelter proposal fantastic and innovative.
“I think it is great. It is long overdue,” he said. “There used to be a bus shelter there, it got damaged many many years ago. It was probably a really simple shelter but I don’t recall. So, a shelter is definitely needed.”
Coun. John Coulson said the shelter idea is terrific and praised those involved for putting it together.
“It’s not just some kind rinky-dink thing thrown together here,” Coulson said. “Dan Fell is a structural engineer and so it has been designed and certified.”