It is a new approach to increase foot traffic in downtown Weyburn.
During Monday night’s meeting of Weyburn City Council, a discretionary use development permit was submitted from Big Jim’s Brew Shop, a business on 3rd Street. The request was for the installation of a seasonal patio within the parking lane of the street right-of-way in front of the business.
The motion, which would allow for the installation of the patio from May 1st to September 30th, that went before the council had no objections from the surrounding businesses within a 75-metre radius and was approved unanimously by the councillors.
“It’s something new to Weyburn, and to revitalize downtown a little bit we’re looking to build a culture down here, and what a way to start off with a summer patio in downtown Weyburn,” explained Todd Bedore, owner of Big Jim’s Brew Shop.
The idea isn’t a new one amongst a number of the businesses downtown, but Bedore was the first to get the application into City Hall. The hope is to create a vibrant atmosphere along 3rd Street, which is considered the main street of the city in many aspects, as it passes through the heart of downtown.
Bedore said there is a group of people downtown who are driving to work to get the spark moving and want to partner with the city to make it possible.
“I wanted to be the first one, so we’re going to hopefully have a whole street full of patios here, and create a vibrant place for people to come in the summer,” Bedore added.
Another idea that was floated was the idea of introducing more walkability for the downtown core, such as making 3rd Street pedestrian-only at certain times of the year, something that can be seen in the centres of a number of other thriving municipalities across the country.
“There’s lots of different ways to do it,” Bedore exclaimed. “You can have pedestrian-only, you can have maybe parking on one side of the street, even shut it on Saturdays to have markets. There’s so many different ideas.”
In a test run of sorts, Big Jim’s held a barbecue in the spot where the patio will be built next year Thursday afternoon. The barbecue itself was a fundraiser for the Weyburn branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.
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