ESTEVAN - The integrated pathway system in Estevan has remained popular in what has been its first full year, and further work will happen to improve them.
Rod March, the city’s manager of parks and facilities, said he sees a lot of people using them.
“We’re seeing lots of people out there on them, and people are loving them. I’m getting lots of feedback where any potential issues may be, and we’re addressing them.”
Most of the pathways were built and surfaced last summer and fall, and could only be used for a few months or weeks in 2021. It also means they had to weather their first Saskatchewan winter, along with two snowstorms in April and above-normal precipitation in the spring.
That has created some issues, particularly for the pathway that runs south of Perking Street, from Kensington Avenue to Fourth Avenue South.
“We know that on the south end there’s been excessive rain this year, so it exposed a couple of areas where we needed four or five more culverts in place just to handle that drainage that comes out of Perkins,” said March.
A couple of spots around McDonald Road also need to be addressed. There was erosion along Fourth Avenue South near the Casa Colina Apartments, but engineering services mitigated the problem by installing a curb by the north end of that section so that the water is diverted from the parking lot of the apartments instead of onto the swale.
They also addressed a troublesome area near Jensen Road.
“Every year we’re going to get little areas, but the more we identify … where the erosion is, then we’re going to keep at it and fix it,” March said.
They have met with the contractor and a plan is in place for the mitigative strategies that need to be completed.
And they have had some surface tension cracks.
Once the work that needs to be finished is completed, they will shift their attention to applying asphalt to a stretch between Sister Roddy Road and 16th Avenue.
“With the wet spring that we’ve had and summer, we just want to make sure it’s completely dry before we go down there and tackle that piece,” said March.
He believes it will be finished this year.
The other lingering issue – the area around the north CP Rail crossing on Kensington Avenue – still hasn’t been addressed. Talks are ongoing about extending the sidewalk, but that’s in the application process by the city. Upgrades were completed to the crossing earlier this year.
A couple of porta potties have been installed at the south end of Kensington Avenue and the north end of Bannatyne Avenue. Litter containment systems have been added and more are ordered. Benches have been ordered, too.
“With supply chain issues, they’re not due to arrive here until September 29, at which time we will install those. There’s still some work to do, and it’s an ongoing thing,” said March.
A washroom facility is going to be added in the Westview area as well.
People expect the city to look after the pathways, so there will be money set aside each year for maintenance, he said.
A map is in the works as well. A consultant has put together a package with Jacquelyn Massey-Rounds, who it the city’s marketing manager, and they have all the necessary GPS data collected.
The map should be available soon, but March wanted to know where benches and litter containers would be located before releasing it.
Physical and digital versions of the map will be available.
Concrete blocks that are located at the entrance to many pathways to keep vehicles away will eventually be twisted 90 degrees to make it easier for pedestrians to navigate, and they will eventually be replaced by bollard poles that are collapsible and more aesthetically pleasing.