At the end of 2018, 980 CJME Reporter Lisa Schick sat down with Regina’s Mayor Michael Fougere to talk about what he thinks 2019 will bring.
Lisa Schick: What do you see as the big things coming up in the next year?
Mayor Michael Fougere: Well, I see more of the growth happening. I think the Railyard Renewal project is big on the list. We’re going to have that neighbourhood plan coming to council and for public consultation – and for me that’s a focal point of what’s really necessary to work in our downtown. Most cities don’t have this blank slate of land in the middle of their downtown, right in the centre, and trying to make the best they can of that. So for me that’s a central development happening.
The Ring Road project is another one that should be coming up next year sometime and hopefully, that’ll be another focal point of some good news as well
Schick: We’re expecting something early in the new year, how do you think that’s going to go?
Fougere: Well, I would hope that we would allow them here, and I know that Saskatoon just approved theirs, and we expect to have our report in January coming to council and I anticipate that we will approve that. What we want to do is to see by the regulations, how they’re transformed into our bylaw, how we make sure as much as possible that the regulation is fair and reasonable, as it is with the taxi industry as well.
Schick: How do you think having those ride-sharing apps/companies in Regina will change things for people?
Fougere: It gives them choice, and I think that’s important. I think, as far as I can see, some of the polling I’ve seen that people are really anxious and want to have ride-sharing here. So I think anytime you have competition you get a better service. And this would be competition with the taxi industry and that industry has to adapt as well to the challenges and changes that are happening, so, what happens is when you have competition, the consumer always wins.
Maple Leaf Pool
Schick: During budget deliberations, the city decided not to close Maple Leaf Pool. Will we see construction on that in 2019?
Fougere: Twenty-nineteen will be where we decommission the current one. We have to actually tear it out and get rid of that one so I think 2020 is the date that we’re targeting to have construction happen, and we’ll do as best we can, but we do need to go through due process to clear the site, and then have a tender process, and have the construction actually happen – as soon as we can we’ll do that.”
Schick: Capital Pointe – we know what happened in 2018. Is there going to be more happening in the coming year on that?
Mayor: The provincial tribunal will, as I understand, be hearing arguments once again on how we move forward. We’ll wait and what happens. I’m not sure what that’s going to be, but we continue to be a little frustrated because we’d like to conclude this – either build the project or just move on, cover it up and make it look like it’s a decent and safe site.”
Schick: Twenty-nineteen maybe the year that something happens with Capital Pointe?
Fougere: Could be. Wouldn’t that be a good idea? *laughs