RDN releases draft village plan for Cedar’s main street

NANAIMO – The Regional District of Nanaimo releases draft plan providing vision for Cedar Road which will be up for review Tuesday.

A draft plan to guide the development and growth of Cedar’s main corridor will be up for review this Tuesday (Jan. 29).

Based on the results of a community design charrette held last January, the draft Cedar Main Street Village Plan, compiled by the Regional District of Nanaimo, is a 67-page document which outlines and provide options for creating a compact, walkable community in the heart of Cedar.

“The plan on Cedar main street is to try and develop a plan to give a focus point to the rural village centre,” said Alec McPherson, regional director for Area A.

The area consists of approximately 20.3 hectares, with a focus on Cedar Road between MacMillan Road and Hemer Road.

The plan contains various options for land use, such as mixed residential and commercial buildings, and proposed trails.

“The idea is not to just densify, but to restore commercial space that was taken,” McPherson said. “At the same time you need to have some method of developing that customer base so that commercial will want to situate itself there.”

Other design options in the plan include the installation of an entry monument, establishing an alternate route around Cedar’s main street, and roundabouts to help increase safety and deter excessive speed, which is an ongoing issue, McPherson said.

“Police could be there every day and ticket almost every person that goes along that road,” he said.

McPherson said it is important to remember the plan is long term and major changes will not come overnight. Once finalized, the plan will take a number of years to implement, he said.

He said a couple of things are also pivotal to its implementation, such as the guaranteed provision of water and sewer services.

In addition, the RDN has asked the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development for the authority to design, construct and maintain within the highway right away. A decision on that is expected in the next few months, he said.

“Then we can put in not just sidewalks within the village, but ultimately we should be able to have a separated pathway in the rural areas that would allow people to walk or cycle into the village,” McPherson said. “I see young women now with strollers on the rural roads, and it makes me cringe when I go by.”

Public participation in the Cedar main street plan process is encouraged. Members of the public are welcome to attend the Cedar Main Street Design Project Citizen’s Advisory Group meeting Tuesday (Jan. 29), at 7 p.m. in the Cedar Heritage Centre, 1644 MacMillan Rd.

Residents can also view the plan on the RDN website and submit their comments to cedar