Since we reported the news of the City of New Westminster's plans to refresh the Belmont Street parklet, with a future upgrade and expansion in store, we've been hearing a lot from readers. A letter about how the parklet has become a gathering place for "noisy, swearing smokers" drew quick response from folks — with a variety of takes on the situation.
Here's a sample of some of the responses we've received.
Easy answer: Ban smoking on the parklet!
I actually avoid this area uptown because of this parklet and those who use it.
Finally, someone who agrees! I’m sick of the smokers loitering around, not only smokers but loud filth-mouth talking — it’s all over New Westminster. It’s at the New Westminster SkyTrain station, which could be a nice place to hang out, just like Belmont.
We pay a lot of property tax; don’t we have a voice in the matter? Perhaps if we make it non-smoking and police the area, that would be a start.
Legit, ma'am, this is the problem with the commons. Would you like a cigarette? Because you seem to be taking the realization that you have no dominion here rather poorly.
Why spend all this money when nobody wants this parklet here (except the city staff promoting this crazy idea of a "Great Street")?
This $4.25 million + $260,000 project is just a complete waste of taxpayers' money and has got to be stopped. The residents and owners of the surrounding building told city staff many times.
It is time to "park" the parklet idea and turn it back into a two-way street for all of our health, safety and security.
📢SOUND OFF: Do you like the Belmont parklet? What would you like to see done with it in the future? Share your thoughts — send us a letter.