Tuesday the City Council voted in favour of building a waterpark at the site just north of the Forks. Now word on the street (or Global News) is that there are already plans to construct a reportedly larger waterpark near the future IKEA. If this is true I hope it means the end of the downtown waterpark. Hopefully a developer will come forth with plans to build a waterpark near IKEA with their own money.
Honestly I don’t see the appeal of a waterpark in Downtown Winnipeg. Do you really want to strip down to a swimsuit and splash around with a bunch of rowdy kids when it’s 40 below? Who is the target waterpark patron? I doubt the Downtown residents will show much interest, certainly not the Waterfront Dr. condo crowd. Business would rely on families from the suburbs, families visiting from rural Manitoba, and out of province tourists.
The City’s justification for its 7 million dollar investment is the $700,000 worth of free admission tickets it will be allowed to distribute to lower income families. Is that really the type of social program Winnipeg needs? Will a waterpark as it has been promised be "a tremendous benefit to the city"?
I can’t help but draw comparisons between Winnipeg and the cartoon absurdities of Springfield. As Gregory Taylor has suggested, perhaps Lyle Lanley has moved on from monorail development and is now in business with Canalta and the waterpark lobby.
What an absurd city we live in.
My hope is that the IKEA waterpark will prove to be a better plan and require no (or less) government subsidization, which will free up the proposed site for a hopefully more suitable project, and the 7 million dollars for a more worthy cause.