Pop up parks, street FUN-iture as well as kindness meters will be coming to Delta this summer.
Last summer, Delta's Community Resilience and Economic Recovery Support Team (CRERST) initiated the installation of 18 ‘We Love Delta” Adirondack chairs at the Social Heart Plaza, Elliott Street Wharf and the Tsawwassen Library.
To build on that initiative, additional street furniture placemaking and other outdoor features will be coming to Delta's business districts.
Delta partnered with the University of Waterloo on a pandemic placemaking research project to identify fun projects, which was dubbed as "Street FUN-iture" by Delta staff, which would suit the community.
This spring, the city in partnership with the university conducted a two-week online survey to engage the community and the results showed that the public would like to see seating/eating areas with draped lighting, as well as recreation activities including ping pong and bocce.
An internal city working group then agreed on conceptual drawings for Delta's 2021 Street FUN-iture program for Ladner, Tsawwassen and North Delta.
In Ladner, a We Love Delta Pop Up Park will be set up on Bridge Street.
A report to council notes it will include a full street closure on Bridge Street from Delta Street to Harbour Stroll, but the portion of Bridge Street west of Harbour Stroll will be open to local traffic only.
“The street will be overlaid with recycled synthetic turf and activated with picnic tables with umbrellas, moveable tables and chairs, Adirondack chairs, bocce, a corn hole game, and ping pong. The entire corridor will be lit with draped patio lights that will operate on a timer. The park will be accessible from the street level or sidewalk level if using the accessible letdown. Delta will work to partner with local businesses interested in signing out bocce balls, corn hole bags, and ping pong paddles and balls. This relationship would both support the use of the space and drive consumer traffic to businesses,” the report notes.
The report adds consultations will be held prior to the street closure.
“However, if there are major issues with the proposed Bridge Street closure, the working group will consider alternative locations or revise the current plans to better ensure that Delta is not negatively impacting businesses in the adjacent area,” the report notes.
Meanwhile, similar to last year, the Elliott Street Wharf will be activated with Adirondack chairs, however, this year chairs will be better positioned to allow for socialization with friends and couples at a safe, physical distance.
The report notes the wharf will also have picnic tables with umbrellas and a high-walled bocce court. The railing around the wharf will be strung with patio lights that will operate on a timer, while Delta will work to partner with local businesses interested in signing out bocce balls.
To improve accessibility to the wharf, a colourful diagonal crosswalk is proposed as a pilot for summer 2021.
Nearby, an outdoor reading room will be installed in the grass on the south side of the Ladner Library.
In Tsawwassen, a pop up park is planned for Brandrith Park, but the city will also approach Tsawwassen commercial property owners with properties suited for Street FUN-iture to see if they’re interested in installations.
At the Tsawwassen Library, subject to property owner Century Group’s approval, an outdoor reading room is to be installed in the front entry way to the building and will include Adirondack chairs, a picnic table with an umbrella and a ping pong table.
In North Delta, pop up parks will be coming for Wade Park and McKitrick Park while an outdoor reading room will be set up at the George Mackie Library.
Staff note alcohol consumption will not be permitted in pop up park areas with the exception of the Ladner Outdoor Reading Room, which is located within the boundaries of a designated alcohol consumption area of Memorial Park.
The Street FUN-iture installations are estimated to cost $80,000.
The city is also planning to launch a Kindness Meter Initiative, in partnership with CRERST and the Delta School District.
It will see up to seven decommissioned double-headed parking meters, which were obtained for free from another municipality, repurposed as kindness meters to collect spare change for local non-profit charitable organizations impacted by the pandemic.
The meters will be colourful, having artwork by local high schools with the themes "We Love Delta" and "Kindness" in their designs.