POWELL RIVER, B.C. – The Mayor of Powell River is advocating for vehicle parking to be reinstated in front of a long-time business in the Cranberry neighbourhood.

During the April 2 committee of the whole meeting, Dave Formosa brought the matter of parking in bike lanes near Mitchell Brothers store.

Formosa explained the concerns of the owner and manager at the store on Manson Ave.

“The city is doing extensive bike lanes throughout the city, piecemeal, portion, after portion, after portion,” he said. “They (have been) doing this (for) a number of years, now.”

One of the bike lanes goes through the Cranberry neighbourhood and ends in front of Mitchell Brothers.

“Across the street from Mitchell Brothers, we ended up with the bike lane and no parking along the streetscape,” Formosa said.

Mitchell Brothers has been in the Cranberry area as a grocer, which Formosa estimates is “well over 50 years,” and for many years there has been public parking near the store.

Travellers en route to Lund or Powell Lake would park in front of Mitchell Brothers and pick up what they needed for the day, Formosa added.

“The loss of that street parking in front of their business, they were feeling it at their sales till,” Formosa explained.

“Council had passed the motion to allow the bike lanes and the store owners (and) management approached council and asked if we could re-consider (re-instating parking in front of the store). So I asked to have the issue reconsidered and now it’s being reconsidered.”

According to a report from the Powell River Peak, staff will return to committee of the whole with options on implementing vehicle parking and the use of sharrows across from Mitchell Brothers store, in consultation with the Powell River Cycling Association and the store owner.

The Peak also reported that staff has been directed to review lowering the speed limit in the commercial area from DA Evans Park through to Mitchell Brothers store.
Formosa hopes the bike lane is shortened to not include that piece of land, or make the last block a share lane.

He added that other issue that the committee has requested, is that staff review of a potential 30 km/h speed limit on the corridor in front of Mitchell Brothers, and around the corner heading into the townsite.

“We would like to have a 30 kilometre (per hour) speed limit so we’re going to hear about that,” Formosa said.