I would like to put my two cents forth as a member of the younger generation who grew up in Penticton and utilized Skaha Park regularly.
My parents still live in Penticton, and we frequently visit the park with my young son when we are in town. Having lived throughout the Okanagan in various cities, I am always bragging about how Penticton has the best beaches and parks, hands down.
I absolutely understand what a wonderful commodity a waterslide would be for the town; my family certainly utilized both waterslides when they were in existence years ago and I am whole-heartedly in support of a new waterslide for Penticton. Here are the two things that rub me the wrong way.
In this day and age of heightened environmental awareness and preserving our natural resources, why would we feel that carving space out of our beautiful park is the only option? There are certainly other viable location options for a waterslide to be built. Why can’t Trio lease private land like any other prospective business owner?
Which brings me to my second bone of contention. Since when does City Council have the power to lease out public parkland for commercial interests behind the public’s back? Sounds incredibly shady to me.
And what kind of precedent does that set for the future of public space throughout the city? Any of Penticton’s so-called “public land” could be taken away at the drop of a hat. Isn’t Penticton’s green space and public land valuable enough to be protected?
Don’t get me wrong, I think that boosting Penticton’s economy through new business ventures is wonderful and badly needed. I am just in favour of protecting Penticton’s already amazing assets in the process. One should not have to be sacrificed for the other.
I know that this is a highly controversial, hot topic for Penticton, but everyone needs to be reminded to be respectful of each other’s opinions.
The pettiness of the hurtful comments that are posted online are disgraceful to whatever side you happen to agree with, and are entirely unnecessary. Thank you for your time reading my opinion on the issue. I hope it provides a little food for thought, going forward.