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Woodhaven begins planning for community renewal

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A canoe launch, new trails and improved programming for area seniors.

Those are just a few suggestions the Woodhaven Community Club is mulling over as it pieces together its Building a Better Woodhaven Initiative, a neighbourhood improvement plan aimed at developing the club and surrounding park space.

"We’re trying to find out how to better the community centre for the neighbourhood," said club president Mike Weber.

"The best way we thought to do that was put together a five-year plan."

In November, the Assiniboia community committee approved $24,000 in land dedication reserve funding for the club to hire Scatliff+Miller+Murray to oversee the consultations and draft a plan.

The club held a preliminary open house in early December and is slated to meet with the consultants later this month, Weber said.

Suggestions so far have included the possibility of a canoe launch, extending the Trans Canada Trail into Woodhaven, and finding ways to bolster programming for area seniors.

"There’s more talk about what we can do for seniors clubs," said Weber, noting Mensheds Manitoba, which has been operating in the club for the last two years, along with the nearby Courts of St. James.

"They’re right across the street, so it’s a natural fit."

The hope is to have the plan finalized in March, with more consultations with coaches, convenors, senior group leaders, and the community to come, he said.

Weber hopes the club can attract input from beyond the comfy confines of Woodhaven — the club’s catchment area extends as far north as Athlone School, he said.

"There are people out there, especially north of Portage Avenue who might not know they’re part of our club," he said.

"We want to know what they’re looking for so we can better serve them."

The club is currently fundraising for the initiative by selling 500 limited edition prints of The Hill by artist Kevin Coughlin. The club presented the painting last month to Winnipeg’s Richardson family, who live in Woodhaven.

The Richardson family was instrumental in saving the hill from housing development in the late 1990s and donating it to the community, Weber said.

The painting complements one of Coughlin’s previous works of the Woodhaven hockey rinks, copies of which hang in each of the private boxes at the MTS Centre.

"It was a perfect fit," Weber said.

Prints are selling for donations of $100 or greater, and come with a charitable tax receipt.

All funds raised will go towards the initiative, including any consulting and project costs incurred down the road, Weber said.

For more, visit www.woodhavencc.ca.


matt.preprost@canstarnews.com

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Twitter: @metroWPG

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