For the past decade, people have complained about the junky look to Port Alberni’s entrance, coming around the final corner of the Highway 4 Hump and looking down the hill toward the Alberni Valley Chamber of Commerce’s visitors’ centre.
Last week, the city and Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District finally did something about it.
For years, Alberni Valley residents have groused about the line of billboards coming down the hill, as well as the aesthetics of the auto wreckers’ business behind Coombs Country Candy. This month, Mayor Mike Ruttan and Cherry Creek regional director Lucas Banton, and their respective municipal governments, partnered to find a solution. They approached Island Timberlands for a donation of 1,000 trees to plant along both sides of the highway—behind Coombs Country Candy and some of the billboards as well as the other side of the road, all the way to the visitors’ centre.
A boulevard of fir trees is fitting for a community that got its start more than a century ago because of its forests, and both a city and regional district that continue to grow around their natural resources.
It may seem like a small gesture, since the trees are leftover from Island Timberlands’ spring planting season, and they aren’t very big at the moment. They will take nurturing.
As Mayor Ruttan says, it may take 20 years to see the results, but you’ve got to start somewhere.
The baby trees are a good start, indeed.
— Alberni Valley News