Town to recommence public consultation on furniture options for downtown Oakville

Tue, 26 Jul 2016

Be sure to have your say this fall

Town Council passed a motion on July 25, 2016, directing staff to recommence a public engagement process this fall with traditional, classical and contemporary furniture options — streetlights, benches, bike rings and bollards — for the Lakeshore Road East Reconstruction and Streetscape Project. The motion also called on staff to develop options for Lakeshore Road that would provide, in whole or in part, a flexible (curbless) street. Staff are expected to report back on both items in early 2017.  In the meantime, staff will move forward with incorporating the garbage/recycling stations as well as the granite pavers and curbs into the streetscape design as presented to the public this past March and June.

“Engaging with the public is always vital. In this case, Council believes the streetscape design will be a key factor in the success of downtown Oakville as a social, cultural and economic hub” said Mayor Burton. “That’s why we’ve asked staff to seek additional public input on this issue before we come to a decision.”

Following extensive public consultation through the Downtown Transportation and Streetscape Study (DTS) a contemporary theme was chosen in 2015, over traditional and classical, to complement the historic buildings in the streetscape yet remain a reflection of the current time. However, when specific contemporary furniture pieces were presented to the public this past March and June there was significant concern and opposition about the theme choice. Desire to maximize a flexible (curbless) design of the Lakeshore Road East configuration was also discussed at these meetings as a topic for consideration.

Once finalized, the new streetscape materials and furnishing are expected to be used as part of the Lakeshore Road Reconstruction and Streetscape Project slated to start in 2019, and for other streets in downtown Oakville as they are reconstructed in the future. The new curbs and pavers will be included when the town undertakes to rehabilitate the Lakeshore Road Bridge at Sixteen Mile Creek starting in early 2017, including the roadway approaches between Navy Street and Forsythe Street.

Background

The Downtown Oakville Heritage Conservation District (DOHCD) Plan identified the current mixture of designs, materials and colours in downtown as visually cluttered. The DOHCD Plan identified the opportunity for a new design of streets furnishing, allowing for contemporary improvements, so long as it is cohesive, supports the pedestrian environment and does not compete with the historic material of the district.

With Lakeshore Road East (Navy Street to Allan Street) coming to the end of its lifespan and needing a major reconstruction, the town undertook extensive research and public consultation to identify broader opportunities to improve traffic, beautify streets and improve pedestrian/cycle ways in the downtown. In October 2015, Council approved the Lakeshore Road Reconstruction and Streetscape Project as part of the Downtown Transportation and Streetscape Study (DTS) study.

For more information visit the Lakeshore Road Reconstruction Project page.