A plan is in the works to add the name ‘Veterans Way’ to the 200 block of Kinchant Street, downtown Quesnel.
The 200 block runs from Carson Avenue to Barlow Avenue, and is the location of the Quesnel Cenotaph and the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 94.
City of Quesnel Councillor Ron Paull brought the idea to council in February of this year. City manager Byron Johnson says council has approved the project in principle, and is now working on figuring out what the costs and approach will be.
“Kinchant Street will be dually tagged. So the signposts will have an extra sign above Kinchant Street that says Veterans Way, and we may put a few extra signposts that just say Veterans Way,” says Johnson.
As Coun. Paull explains, the street cannot be officially renamed to Veterans Way, as it would affect maps and 911 calls, for example, but the idea is to honour veterans with the additional signage.
“It would be great if we could legally change the name of that street so the address of the Legion could be 262 Veterans Way, but that’s not going to happen. I think at the end of the day we need to bring more focus to the Legion,” he says.
Paull also hopes to add banners to the west side of the street.
“We are looking at modifying the banners on the west side of the street, where it presently says Farmers’ Market. The thinking is, we can put double banners on those posts, with Farmers’ Market on the inside and … possibly bringing a picture or two out of the Legion to incorporate into [Veterans Way] banners,” he explains. Paull would also like to install flagpoles outside of the Legion, and design and purchase flags that can be flown on special occasions, including Remembrance Day and Billy Barker Days.
Johnson confirms the City of Quesnel will foot the bill for the new signposts, and Paull is working on securing funding for the banners and flagpoles.
Paull is a veteran himself, and says he hopes to bring more attention to the Legion, and the veterans in general.
“It’s important to keep the cause of the veterans alive, and bring as much attention to our struggling Legion as we can, and this will further that cause,” he says.
Quesnel Legion president Terry McCluskie is supportive of the project.
“It would be great news for us to honour our veterans. We are all in favour of Veterans Way.”
In addition to the new permanent signposts, Paull would like to see if funding will stretch to purchasing chairs and decorative regalia to use to block off an area for aging veterans to sit during the annual Remembrance Day ceremony.
City manager Johnson says signage design ideas are being worked on and a more detailed report will be put before City Council at a meeting in late November, with the new signs potentially being installed in spring 2019.