City of Regina concerned big business may supersede leisure in popular park

Regina city council has voted unanimously in favour of a motion to protect the iconic Wascana Park from future commercial development.

The downtown Regina skyline, seen from the shores of Wascana Park. Photo by Tintaggon via Wikimedia Commons.
The downtown Regina skyline, seen from the shores of Wascana Lake in Wascana Centre. Photo by Tintaggon via Wikimedia Commons.

The vote came Monday after councillors heard from 14 delegations — nearly all of which spoke in favour of the motion.

The park is governed by the Provincial Capital Commission and Mayor Michael Fougere says he hopes the organization will agree to a meeting to discuss the city’s concerns about Wascana’s future.

A series of recommendations within the motion do not cover two construction projects already approved for the park, including the Conexus Credit Union headquarters and an office for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.

The new Conexus building is expected to be completed by 2020.

A group called No Business in the Park has been raising concerns about that project, arguing that it’s opening the doors to future development in the area.

The PCC is a board made up of a representative from the City of Regina, three from the province and one from the University of Regina. It assumed responsibility for the park, also referred to as Wascana Centre, in the spring of 2017.

The commission’s website says its mission is to “enhance the quality of life by creating community partnerships, promoting visitor experiences and providing stewardship of the land and assets” within its jurisdiction.

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