Interior Health waives washroom requirement

The Heritage Park washroom structure. File photo

Joanne Layh

District staff efforts to persuade Interior Health to back down on their requirement for a washroom adjacent to the splash pad in Heritage Park have finally paid off.

This afternoon the municipality issued a press release stating that the Interior Health Authority (IHA) has agreed to waive the requirement for a new washroom and water fountain for Heritage Park.

Previously, IHA had insisted there be washrooms installed next to the splash pad before it could be permitted to open, despite the fact that there is an existing accessible set of washrooms just across the street.

The decision follows continued discussions between Peachland’s chief administrative officer and director of operations and IHA, including a recent site visit to the Heritage Park splash pad location.

“Interior Health has indicated that as a result of the waiver, the washroom facility for the Heritage Park splash pad will be the existing one across Beach Ave. The District of Peachland will increase safety at the crosswalk on Beach Avenue for access to the existing washrooms,” the release states. “Furthermore, the water fountain for the Heritage Park splash pad will be at the north end of the existing playground.”

“Council and district staff are grateful to the Interior Health Authority for their reconsideration on this matter, especially during an extremely busy time within their organization,” said Mayor Fortin.

“It’s very good, I’m excited,” Fortin told the View. “I still am concerned about people crossing the road and I still want to see a blinking light like we have a Swim Bay put there and maybe a couple of port-a-potties put in Heritage Park.”

The still unused washroom facility was delivered to the municipality last fall with a price tag of approximately $100,000. Adding stairs to the washroom would have cost the town another $40,000.

What will become of the structure remains to be determined.

CAO Joe Creron is expected to bring a report to council in the near future to determine what should be done with the existing washroom along with an evaluation of other needs within the park.

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