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City reveals changes to waterfront development that sparked protests

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The City of Barrie is making adjustments to the hotly debated multi-purpose field along the waterfront.

On Tuesday, the City revealed it revised the project to protect the nearby woodlot, reduce the size of the field, and position it closer to the road.

The changes would ensure that the existing paved walking path remains unaffected and that natural barriers will be considered instead of fencing.

The City confirmed in a release that "if any trees need to be removed, they will be replaced. Council has committed to planting an additional 1,000 trees on the waterfront and to protecting the Vimy trees."

The release noted the Vimy trees are not doing well in their existing location and would benefit from relocating.

The City of Barrie announced the planned multi-purpose field along the waterfront would relocate on Tues., June 18, 2024. (Source: City of Barrie)

The field will provide a parade ground for the Sea Cadets and will be an open-air versatile space for various community sports and activities.

Residents opposed to the development say the City's amendments to the project aren't good enough.

"We are frustrated because the City has not heard our voices. We want this moved to a different location," said Barrie resident Arnie Ivsins.

Ivsins is one of thousands of residents who signed a petition against the development.

The City noted public consultation is scheduled for this fall, giving residents an opportunity to voice their opinions and offer feedback on several design and layout aspects.

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