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New inclusive play space opens in downtown Lethbridge

The Galt Gardens playground in downtown Lethbridge is now open. The Galt Gardens playground in downtown Lethbridge is now open.

After about four months of work, the Galt Gardens play space is now open to the public.

It features a slide, swing, sensory area and more for people with physical abilities to enjoy.

“As a parent right now in Lethbridge, I have two kids seven and nine, so this is a perfect kind of space to bring them and I already enjoy a lot of the features of the downtown,” said Crystal Schite, urban revitalization manger for the City of Lethbridge.

The $662,000 project was funded in part by a $375,000 grant from the federal government and a $10,000 donation from Kal-Tire.

The city believes the new play space, along with other revitalization efforts, will help bring people downtown.

“This is really a key piece to revitalizing our downtown and our downtown core. This park does fill a gap in play spaces that we were lacking in our downtown core, so it opens up that opportunity. It nicely compliments the rotary spray park that we have,” Coun. Jenn Schmidt-Rempel of the City of Lethbridge said.

There was some pushback on the idea.

Online, some residents said the play space being built in an area frequented by vulnerable populations and people experiencing homelessness wasn’t a good idea and that people wouldn’t feel safe bringing their children there.

Lethbridge police will be patrolling the area to help make it safe for families to enjoy.

“When it comes to patrolling the area we will treat the park just like any other portion of the downtown core. Through some proactive patrols and responding for calls to service as we usually do,” Sgt. Ryan Darroch of the LPS downtown policing unit said.

The city hopes adding the play space to Galt Gardens will bring more families to the area and promote positive uses for the area.

The downtown business community feels the new play space will have an economic benefit as well.

“People are going to come down here then further patronize businesses. When people come to play in the park wat that does is push the pedestrian traffic into the various businesses and services that we do have downtown,” said Sarah Amies, the executive director of the downtown Lethbridge BRZ.

The play space is located near the southeast corner of the park across the street from CASA. Top Stories

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