One of Winnipeg’s most prominent parks is getting a bit of a facelift.
Construction has begun at the northeast corner of Vimy Ridge Memorial Park in an effort to highlight a memorial that stands there.
“What we’re doing is we’re reorganizing the park a little bit,” said Cindy Gilroy, councillor for Daniel Macintyre. “The Vimy Ridge Memorial Cross will be reset into a new processional plaza that will have seating, raised flowers, lighting and a connecting path.
“Many of our military groups … use the park for a lot of military events.”
The $350,000 renovation came about in part from special funding from Veterans Affairs Canada, and coincides with the centenary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which was on April 9.
“Veterans Affairs Canada has approved funding of up to $50,000 to assist with the restoration of the Vimy Ridge Memorial in Winnipeg through its Commemorative Partnership Program,” said a spokesperson from Veterans Affairs Canada.
Gilroy said the rest of the funding is coming from the City of Winnipeg and various grants.
Several groups, including the Royal Winnipeg Rifles and the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada, came together collaboratively to consult on the design. “[We wanted] to make sure that we do have a plaza that remembers the men and women that we’re honouring,” Gilroy said.
Hopefully we are going to get more people to see [the monument] prominently … they’ll be able to recognize ‘Hey, there’s something going on at that park, let’s go check it out.”
– Coun. Cindy Gilroy
The park will be ready for visitors in mid-September, Gilroy said, and she’s hopeful the new design will drive visitors to the area during military events such as Remembrance Day.
“We’re going to have lighting, we’re going to be able to have seating so veterans will be able to sit down. There’s also going to be flags that kind of highlight the area a little bit more. So hopefully we are going to get more people to see [the…