Customers will come when parking improves

No safe place along First Avenue to drop off and pick up dance students

Editor, The Record:

Re: First Avenue speed limit dropping to 40 km/h, Oct. 18 edition.

I feel I must respond to Carol Aun’s article about reducing the speed limit on First Avenue and specifically to Ronda Cushnie’s comments about making the area pedestrian friendly.

Making First Avenue pedestrian friendly would be easier to do if Mission was not a town full of strip malls where many of the residents cannot even be bothered to get out of their car to buy high-fat fast food.

Mission’s Downtown Business Association will draw business to their shops only if they can provide a great deal more parking on First Avenue, Railway and Second Avenue as well as the connecting streets of James, Welton, Horne and Grand streets.

There are many times when I have found it so difficult to park within several square blocks of the business premises I wanted to go into that I have simply given up and gone home.

I am not a person who patronizes drive-thru restaurants, and I am certainly not averse to walking a bit to get where I need to go. Having said that, I’m not going to park at the now deserted Bellevue Hotel if I want to go shopping at Goody Too Shoes or have lunch at Eleni’s.

Decades ago Vancouver’s Granville Street merchants decided to make a several block section of the thoroughfare into a pedestrian-only mall. The sad result of that was that it went from being a viable, lively shopping mecca into a run-down place where vagrants and drug addicts took up residence, scaring away shoppers and tourists.

Another problem that needs to be addressed is the horror of trying to drop off your child for dance lessons on First Avenue. There is not even a safe place to stop with flashers on to safely let out and pick up the students because of congested parking. I hope the DBA can quickly come up with solutions.

Karen Gardner

Mission