RDEK powers planning for Wilder Memorial Park

Members of the Fairmont Lions are figuring out the best way to turn donated land into a park

Members of the Fairmont and District Lions Club are figuring out the best way to turn a parcel of donated land into a park.

Three years ago, 10 acres in the Meadows area of Fairmont were donated to the Lions by Fairmont Hot Springs Resort and the Wilder Family.

As the area is within a water table, which makes it susceptible to flooding when river currents are high, the club is trying to determine how best to make the land suitable for recreation.

Support for this endeavour was recently given by the Regional District of East Kootenay board of directors, who allocated the Wilder Memorial Park Development Plan a Discretionary Grant in Aid in the amount of $2,000 at their last monthly meeting on November 7th.

“Our first step is to get enough money together for a land use survey,” said Lions vice president Tex Deagnon, who is a Wilder Park committee member, adding that it will cost about $8,000 to $10,000. The $2,000 will be used on consulting the Fairmont community over feasible planning.

“If the results are positive, we anticipate the existing area will have to be raised three to five feet,” said Deagnon. “Once that’s done, sometime in the future, we could maybe have a ball diamond, picnic table area, green space, or park area.”

To discover the best fit for Fairmont, the Lions will be hosting a town hall-style meeting after the land use survey is complete.

“We have ski hills and golf courses, but no green space,” Deagnon said.

Since no structures will be raised, there is no need to change the zoning.

And while this keeps the project fairly simple and straightforward, there is no set timeline.

“It’s going to be a slow train to get it all done,” Deagnon said. “We don’t anticipate it being done too soon.”

He expects about one metre of backfilling will be needed to prepare the land.