The City of Williams Lake is considering a disposition of Kinsmen Park to implement housing developments.

Earlier this year, the Central Cariboo Housing Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis report estimated 800 new housing units are needed in the area in the next five years.

The site of the Poplar Glade school, which is adjacent to Kinsmen Park, was one of the properties considered for future housing.

According to a report from Planning Analyst, Jessica Ball, city staff distributed 349 surveys to neighbouring properties of Kinsmen Park and the school site within 250 metres. The City reportedly received 121 completed surveys and three formal letters. 72% of respondents opposed the disposal of the park.

60% of respondents use the park weekly to daily and do not find the park amenities satisfactory, and all respondents want to see a developed park with areas for play and activity. 40% said they use the park seldom, but still feel the parks are not satisfactory.

Regarding future neighbourhood density, 14% of surveys expressed the need for more housing and more density in the area, 72% voiced housing should remain the same, and future housing should remain low-density, as is, and 14% were torn between more housing and density.

Williams Lake city council discussed the issue at length at Tuesday’s regular council meeting, and eventually voted to have something drawn up so residents could see what the housing would be like in the area.