Lake Country council approves site of new food bank

Project moving ahead although some concerns exist over parking

Lake Country’s food bank has a new home despite some outstanding concerns.

Council approved Tuesday the food bank building a new facility on district land adjacent to the seniors centre. But there have been some public concerns about how the new structure could impact adjacent activities and specifically vehicle parking.

“If they arrange hours and they don’t have things all at once, we could perhaps fit everything in there,” said Mayor James Baker.

Besides the seniors centre, the recreation centre and curling club are in close proximity to the site on Bottom Wood Lake Road.

A district staff report suggests there is sufficient parking.

“It was determined the biggest parking conflicts arise on Friday evenings, Saturdays and Sundays when  the arena is at its peak demand time,” said Steve Schaffrick, community and customer services director.

“The food bank operates Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., which is the least busy time at the site. Overall, there are 191 parking spots on the entire Winfield Recreation Centre site and the current bylaw requires 164 parking spots.”

Presently, the food bank operates out of part of the old Winfield school, and the  space is inadequate to meet steady demands for the service.

The district is working on a new facility with the Rotary Club of Lake Country and the Lake Country Food Assistance Society.

“Rotary is raising money to build it,” said Baker.

The projected cost is $770,000 and Baker questions why the federal and provincial governments aren’t participating because social issues fall under their mandate.

“This is another example of downloading on local government,” he said.

“We will go after senior government for grants to help Rotary out.”