Dozens of Abbotsford’s parks have been re-opened, but Mill Lake Park remains closed due to public safety risks following last week’s ice storm.
“It will take weeks to clean up, assess and secure the safety of parks and trails,” City of Abbotsford spokesperson Tracy Boudreau wrote in an email last week.
She said city staff have been prioritizing roads and sidewalks, followed by areas of imminent hazard and paths and trails used by children going to school, which open next week. Parks and trails will follow.
Although dozens of people took advantage of the good weather to walk around Mill Lake last Wednesday, and signs posted on lock gates said the park would remain closed through Jan. 2, the city reiterated that the centrepiece of the Abbotsford’s park system remains closed.
Boudreau said Mill Lake and Fishtrap Creek parks were both hit “fairly hard by the storm,” with specimen magnolia and apple trees surrounding Trethewey and Kariton House sustaining significant damage. Fishtrap Creek Park remains closed. Multiple other trees were hard hit, including a large one on the park’s western side that was toppled by the ice storm. Evergreen trees sustained less damage.
The ice also damaged fencing at several ballparks.