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Expansion proposed for Mountain View County's Davidson Park

Bergen residents Juergen and Andrew Sadlowski recently came forward with an offer for the use of their land to expand a county park
MVT Davidson Fisher
A fisherman casts on Fallentimber Creek at Davidson Park. The county is considering an expansion of the popular day-use area. File photo/MVP Staff

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - County council has passed a motion authorizing administration to enter into a lease agreement that would allow for the expansion of the Davidson Park day-use area in Bergen.

The move came by way of motion at the recent regularly scheduled council meeting, held in person and by Zoom. 

Owned by the county and located on the Fallentimber Creek, the park land was originally donated by James (Jim) Davidson.

Bergen residents Juergen and Andrew Sadlowski recently came forward with an offer for the use of their land to expand the park, council heard.

“As the landowners of the SE 4-32-5-5, they have offered the use of a fragmented portion of the southeast corner of their land,” Chris Atchison, director of legislative services, said in a briefing note to council.

The Sadlowski property is located north of the park, across the Bergen Road (Twp. Rd. 320).

There is an existing informal trail along the Fallentimber Creek leading to the lands, council heard.

The proposed agreement for the use of the lands for a day use area would see a lease of a portion of the closed road allowance located between SE 4-32-5-5 and the SW 3-32-5-5 to the county for the purpose of operating a public day area.

The term of the agreement will expire on Dec. 31, 2027, with the option for another five-year term. The county would be responsible for the management of the entire day use area.

The Bergen area structure plan identifies Davidson Park as the only public park in the area and there is general policy support for environmentally significant areas to be used as a park, he said.

The proposed expansion was discussed during a recent councillor open house. One nearby landowner has expressed concern with the possible expansion, including worries about trespassing on adjacent lands and litter.

“Administration’s position is that many of these concerns currently exist regardless of development plans,” Atchison said. “With the county playing a more active role on the parcels and putting mitigative measures in place, there is greater ability to provide opportunities for passive recreation within controlled settings, instead of the current environment where visitors access the private property unrestricted.” 

Speaking to council during the April 26 council meeting, Atchison added, “The intent from county administration is not for any permanent infrastructure to be installed on there other than fencing to delineate between the Davidson Park expansion area and the adjacent landowners to the east. 

“The only types of improvements on there would be things like picnic tables and signage as well as some garbage bins to try to keep littering to a minimum as well as a gate and lock at the approach.” 

A land use redesignation would be required for the expansion to proceed.

“There would be further public consultation that would be required as part of our standard public hearing processes,” he said.

“Further community engagement could be considered by council prior to the redesignation application being submitted or the redesignation public hearing could be relied upon to receive any further input.”

Dan Singleton

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