Green space idea at Kneehill County office now on back burner

Written by Stu Salkeld

An idea to make the green space outside the Kneehill County office available for community groups to use didn’t work out quite the way the municipality may have hoped, and the idea has been tabled until further notice. 

The topic was discussed at the regular meeting of council Dec. 8.

Kneehill County Economic Development Officer Jacqueline Buchanan presented councillors with an update on the idea of allowing groups to use the large green space which surrounds the county office, originally brought up at a council meeting last July.

“Council was presented with a request to place two disc golf nets on the Kneehill County land located directly north of the Kneehill County administration building,” stated Buchanan’s report to council.

“This request resulted in further discussion as to how the currently vacant space can benefit multiple organizations in the area. 

As such, council directed administration to reach out to local organizations to determine if there were additional uses for the space.”

Buchanan explained over the next four months staff discussed the idea with various community groups. 

Administration contacted a variety of local organizations regarding suggested uses for the green space, including the Three Hills Health Care Centre, the Town of Three Hills, the Kneehill Medical Clinic, Kneehill FCSS, Seniors Outreach, Kneehill County staff (informal suggestions) and Kneehill County Agriculture Services.

Administration reviewed the responses with council at the (Nov. 17) Committee of the Whole meeting, noting that no projects came forward that met council’s criteria of being substantially completed and funded by the organization proposing the project.”

During discussion Buchanan noted the original group requesting space for disc golf nets changed their mind and no longer needed space near the county office. 

Also, she explained some requirements the county had in place for the idea, such as groups using the space would be expected to do all set-up work themselves and the county more or less doing only the normal lawn maintenance it’s currently doing, were deciding factors.

Hence, none of the ideas that came forward actually met the criteria the county set forth for this idea.

Coun. Faye McGhee stated she appreciated the work staff put into this idea and it did accomplish the main goal which was to find out if the space could benefit some groups in the area.

Councillors unanimously agreed to thank all of the participating organizations for their feedback and table the Kneehill County green space conversation until such a time as if/when a suggested use is presented that meets the recommended criteria.

 

Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

ECA Review

About the author

Stu Salkeld

Stu Salkeld, who has upwards of 28 years of experience in the Alberta community newspaper industry, is now covering councils and other news in the Stettler region and has experience working in the area as well.

He has joined the ECA Review as a Local Journalism Initiative Journalist.

Stu earned his two-year diploma in print journalism from SAIT in Calgary from 1993 to ’95 and was raised in Oyen, Alta., one of the communities within the ECA Review’s coverage area.