WINNIPEG – A new report from the City of Winnipeg says 10 per cent of our public parks are in need of serious repairs or replacements.
The report lists and rates hundreds of parks throughout the city.
But councillor Russ Wyatt doesn’t think the report accomplished what the Standing Committee of Parks had asked for.
He wanted to see a report containing specific details about each park in Winnipeg, listing what amenities (i.e. fences, benches, playground equipment, etc.) each contains, the condition of each amenity and how much it would cost to repair.
But that isn’t what was presented to him.
“It’s very disappointing because I think we asked a very simple request, and it’s being thrown at us that it’s too much information to give. The information is there, they choose not to share it. That’s a real concern to me.”
The report contains pie charts and tables outlining in bulk what amenities exist but it is very vague and offers no recommendations.
“Every ward has an infrastructure deficit, so the idea behind this report was to give a clear indication of which parks should be a high priority for repair and renewal, and as well to give us an understanding of the state of the infrastructure deficit when it comes to parks. We felt that was often ignored, which is one of the reasons we thought the standing committee was created.”
Most parks are rated as “fair” or “good” but roughly 10 per cent are listed as “poor” or “very poor”
The report says fixing those parks would cost roughly $53 million dollars and further review would be needed before the city signed off on spending that cash, but again the report does not outline what exactly needs to be fixed.
City staff defended their report, saying they need more time to come up with what Wyatt is asking for.
“This is just the start of our asset management report. We’re going to look to improve it over the next couple of years,” explains Dave Domkey, manager of parks and open spaces. “He can have all that data if he wants it, he just needs to meet with us and talk about it.”
Domkey says the information gathered in the report was collected manually over the course of a few years, with students and some engineers checking out equipment and other things in parks.
“Right now we can’t produce that information by park, we’re working towards that. We’re working at making that into an automated process. We’re expecting by the time we do this report next year that we’ll have this available.”
How are the parks in your neighbourhood? You can read the full report below.