Overview of discussions at the Wednesday September 20, 2023 VVCA board meeting:
– presentation by Josh who is interested in planting trees along 14th Street pathway east of Cumberland. Discussions about process, costs, watering requirements, etc. Some concerns about drought conditions in City and tree survival. Proposal to be fleshed out with better costs.
– discussions about City’s College Corridor Plan session at Field House prior to meeting. Concerns about building height/storeys, access to bike lane on north side of College, bike and pedestrian crossing of busy College Drive, parking requirements.
– discussion about possible community-wide session/meeting about transportation in VV: bicycle, vehicle and pedestrian?
– 14th Street bikeway proposal may be coming to council this fall
– VVCA may be able to get both President Murray and Grosvenor Park ski trails done by City this winter. VVCA will submit both and see what happens. VVCA pays for grooming of trails 4-5 times a season.
– dead trees removed from President Murray park. No timeline for replacements yet.
– all programs are full and operating.
– two teams for soccer, U5 coed and U9 boys. May need a new coach for U5 in January. Possible purchase of new jerseys for U9 team.
– approved software purchase for newsletter editor.
– basketball numbers coming in.
– 4 families have volunteered to deliver newsletters.
– anticipate Albert Community Centre renovations to begin spring 2024 and last about a year. Hoping to minimize disturbance to tenants.
– upcoming project: review and update VVCA bylaws and constitution.
– VVCA to plan for a mission/vision session, including practical considerations on what projects to tackle in the community.
Next meeting: Wednesday October 18, 7PM.
Overview of discussions at the VVCA June 2023 board meeting, held Wednesday June 21:
– Councillor Cynthia Block shared items she will be bringing to budget meeting next Wednesday: request a third-party traffic safety audit review of College & Wiggins intersection; update report on active transportation plan; other ‘pinch points’ in bike corridors. Discussion around safety for bicycling in City. Saskatoon Cycles website has a form letter available for concerned cyclists to submit to City.
– Linda from Bridge City Hens made a presentation about movement to allow hens (no roosters) in resident’s yards. Asked for letter of support when proposal is submitted to City.
– President Jon Naylor attended City ‘Community Association President workshop’. Good information about volunteers and record keeping.
– VVBM Community Garden would like their funds to be kept separate and available for future projects. To be discussed in fall with attendance from garden representatives.
– James Cook of University of Saskatoon submitted a written report of USask/City plans for future development: bike/pedestrian lane on north side of College; future medium density housing planned for University endowment lands; water retention pond planned for Cumberland & 14th; new fire hall on Preston to begin service this fall.
– fall program bookings submitted. Basketball and soccer will be submitted later in July. Fall registration dates: September 7 and 12.
– SYSI indoor soccer registration is open now until end of August.
– discussion of upcoming 40th anniversary of VVCA in two or three years. Joint celebration with Nutana? Nutana is closing a street one Sunday a month during summer for residents to use.
– basketball (SMBA) registration open July 10 to September 1. Season starts October 14. Open to grades 3-12. VV player numbers fluctuates and remain low.
– discussions about fall newsletter, deadline for material mid-July. Printed early August, distributed by end of August.
– Josh discussed his proposal from last year to plant more trees along 14th Street walk/bikeway. Some resistance from City and University due to possible interference with ground utilities.
– 15-ish dead trees in President Murray park. VVCA to send letter to City Parks department. Replacement trees?
– ask school janitor to turn off lights to rink during summer.
– next meeting Wednesday September 20, 2023 in the Brunskill School library.
Summary of discussion of the April board meeting that followed the AGM on April 19, 2023.
– Councillor Cynthia Block provided information about the College Corridor plan and the Downtown Arena District: Corridor plan centred around bus rapid transit (BRT) on College; increase density on College, Preston, maybe some places on Wiggins and Cumberland; how to increase density but still be respectful to neighbourhood character; medium density of 3-6 stories along corridors; City engagement sessions to continue this year; try to prioritize pedestrian and bicycle over traffic; 14th Street bikeway needs to be connected to other routes to be successful.
– financial books reviewed for AGM, in good shape. Finances have rebounded since pandemic.
– spring programs up and running, except for Art for Children. Some Spanish classes may need to be partially on zoom.
– Basketball is all done for season.
– Kinder soccer has 10 registrants so far and 3 teams have been formed
– Basketball equipment has been stored and soccer is getting ready. May need to purchase more soccer equipment.
– Rink is wrapped up for the season.
– Luke to talk to VVCA about removing snow from rink and perhaps grooming ski trails before next season.
– Newsletter editor has stepped down. Need a new editor!
– Albert Community Centre has a building walk-thru to assess where renovations are needed. Room on board for a few more people. Would like ACC to have online booking presence.
– Community garden will have their first meeting next week.
– SUM Theatre is performing Thursday May 18 in Grosvenor Park. VVCA would like to organize a hamburger BBQ before the show. Volunteers needed.
– Community cleanup is Saturday May 13, 8:30AM – 1PM, Church of Latter Day Saints parking lot, 10th and Cumberland. Volunteers and trucks needed.
– Next meeting: Wednesday, May 17, 2023, 7PM, Brunskill School library.
Summary of discussion at the March 15, 2023 board meeting:
– SUM Theatre will again be offering free theatre performances in City parks this May and June. First public show is Thursday, May 18, 7PM at Grosvenor Park. Volunteer ushers needed. Volunteers to drop handbills in the neighbourhood before the show. Honorarium granted by VVCA.
– SEIU West, union representing health care workers, presented their “A Safe Spot Means a Lot” campaign. With less parking available for workers and an increased occurance of harassment and assault, they are looking for a solution.
– College Corridor Plan just out with priorities of: finish missing sidewalks; safe street crossings on College; and bicycle paths along College, possibly Wiggins. Full report available on City website.
– discussion of downtown Convention Event and Entertainment District. Info session at Roxy Theatre not well publicized.
– winter programs winding up. Spring registration on March 21.
– Community Cleanup on Saturday May 13, 8:30-1:00PM
– Basketball wrapping up.
– Community Garden meeting to be held mid to late April.
– discussion about rink operation improvements: larger sign about snow removal (shovel over boards); group chat for volunteers; more volunteers needed (minor hockey is a large user so maybe parents can volunteer?); key lockbox possible?
– newsletter has been printed and delivery by Girl Guides has been scheduled.
– next meeting Wednesday April 19, 7PM incorporating the AGM.
Brief overview of discussions at the VVCA board meeting of Feb. 15, 2023.
– SUM Theatre will attend next meeting.
– Constable Tomaz of the Saskatoon Police Services attended the meeting to discuss neighbourhood crime and safety. While crime stats haven’t really changed year to year, there seems to be increase of alcohol, drugs and weapons. Big percentage of his day involve people with alcohol and drug addiction problems. Police have started a zero tolerance operational plan for incidents, issuing tickets for mischief, loitering, etc. Multiple tickets can mean criminal offence and arrest and banning from area (ie: 8th Street).
– ALL incidents, no matter how minor, should be reported to police. Helps police ‘connect the dots’ and deploy resources to where they are needed. No reports = no extra policing. Minor incidents can be reported online. May be revamping of online reporting and bike registry for better user experience.
– Saskatoon is growing and is experiencing bigger city problems. Police budget is comparable to other cities. Police budget is a large part of City budget (more policing = higher taxes).
– possible article in spring newsletter with advice and contact information for police.
– latest expansion to RPP has created more awareness of parking issues for University/hospital staff. University and hospital are responsible for parking requirements, but are now more engaged with City about possible solutions and transportation.
– Councillor Block to hold in-person meet-and-greet along with the Mayor on March 22, 7-8:30 at Aden Bowman cafeteria.
– neighbourhood spring cleanup City orientation on March 2. Details about cleanup date and location should be determined by next meeting.
– 14th Street parklet (adjacent D’Lish in Nutana) design has been revealed. Construction to begin in summer hopefully.
– Main and Clarence intersection community engagement session was held on Feb. 1. Well attended. Concerns about pedestrian and bicycle crossings. Decision will be in spring.
– City received grant for renovations to Albert Community Centre. Interest in other areas of City in preserving older ‘castle’ schools for community use?
– spring program registration will be on March 21, 7-8:30pm. Offering yoga, tae kwon do, art, badminton and Spanish. Website will be updated soon.
– outdoor spring soccer registration is coming, likely offering U5, U7.
– rink is well used and being maintained well by rink crew. Thank you!
– newsletter should be out mid-March, in time to announce the AGM in April.
– VVCA social at the Escape room was enjoyed by all who attended.
– next meeting Wednesday March 15.