Lantzville’s main drag may look a whole lot different in the coming years.
During a council meeting on July 8, Lantzville councillors voted unanimously in favour of supporting the final proposed design for the Lantzville Road streetscape design plan, an ambitious project that would significantly transform the look of Lantzville’s main street.
Councillors had authorized the creation of the streetscape plan earlier this year, following the endorsement and adoption of the Village Core Improvement Plan. As a result of council’s decision to support the streetscape plan, district staff will be applying for a $100,000 grant from Island Coastal Economic Trust. If successful, the money would be used to fund village core improvements. In order to be eligible for ICET’s grant, the district was required to submit a streetscape plan.
According to the streetscape plan, roughly 800 metres of Lantzville Road, between Huddlestone Road and Wiles Road, would be transformed into a landscaped boulevard complete with on-street parking, separated sidewalks and bike lanes and streetlights.
Lantzville Road would remain two lanes for vehicles, one lane for each direction; however, a roundabout would be installed at the Ware Road intersection. There would be a mixture of parallel and 33 angled parking spaces along Lantzville Road.
The same improvements would be made to Lantzville School Road and a portion of Dickenson Road. A parking lot at Seaview Elementary is also slated for significant upgrades, including paving and beautification according to the plan, which also notes that costs could potentially be shared between the district and Nanaimo Ladysmith school district.
The plan also calls for an elevated crosswalk and brick-laid intersection at Lantzville Road and Dickenson Road that would have Lantzville’s logo inlaid in the brick, which is meant to connect to a proposed public plaza beside Lantzville’s district hall.
According to a staff report, above-ground utility lines could one day be placed underground in order to allow more room for trees to grow and alleviate any potential interference with trees.
Coun. Ian Savage said the streetscape plan is needed because getting around Lantzville Road is a “nightmare” at the moment. He said he really likes the plan because it improves safety for pedestrians by placing a green space between the walkway and road and makes the village more attractive.
“The village is the soul of our community and we should take pride in it by making it as appealing and welcoming as possible,” he said.
Lantzville Mark Swain said he was pleased with the proposed designs, pointing out that there is room to expand the parking lot behind the district hall. He also said the plan can be implemented over time.
“I … like how this is something that can be done in stages; it doesn’t have to be done at once,” he said. “We can apply for grants as we go along and get things moving. We’re not going to be sitting on our hands here, we are going to be getting things done.”
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