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Coal Mine Park getting makeover

Construction of pathways, pollinator garden set to complete in October
0607 Coal mine sup
Construction of Coal Mine Park in Erin Ridge is underway. The blue line shows where a proposed low-impact trail will run.

Nature lovers rejoice – Erin Ridge North will soon be home to a newly enhanced nature park.

Construction of Coal Mine Park has just begun, a $186,000 project that will see 380 metres of paths installed, interpretive signs and St. Albert’s first pollinator garden.

“There’s a lot of excitement about it, so I think it really will enhance the quality of life for citizens, not just in the (Erin) Ridge area, but in all of St. Albert because it is a unique place,” said St. Albert community recreation supervisor Donna Hinchey.

Construction on Coal Mine Park will be low-impact, because it is a designated significant natural area – a natural area equal to or greater than 0.5 hectares which is considered significant to the community of St. Albert.

The edge of the natural area will have three separate amenity areas, complete with seating and garbage signs. As well, there will be interpretive signs for educational purposes, explaining about pollinators that will be attracted by the pollinator garden.

“It’s going to be great to connect residents with nature and give future generations the chance to appreciate and enjoy the area, provide education on the importance of biodiversity, and we already have a lot of people that go into that area to birdwatch,” Hinchey said.

The project is set to be complete Oct. 30, and is part of the Erin Ridge North Open Space Enhancements Concepts plan.

Hinchey said funding for the park was approved by council through their capital budget process.

Coal Mine Park will not be maintained in the winter but will be open for snowshoeing.

The neighbourhood has other construction projects on the books as well. Everitt Park was completed in 2018, and construction of two stormwater management facilities, Edgewater and Element, are coming up for review and potential approval this winter when city council deliberates on the 2020 budget.

Hannah Lawson

About the Author: Hannah Lawson

Hannah Lawson joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2019 after working as editor of the Athabasca Advocate. She writes about city hall.
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