Franz’s Trail to become clearer at street festival 

On Sept. 7, residents and merchants in Creekside are hosting a street festival to celebrate the completion of some road work and the neighbourhood in general.

Lake Placid Road, from the highway to Alpha Lake Park will be taken over by a beer tent, Dusty’s famous barbecue, children’s activities, performers, and booths dedicated to community projects and developments.

One of those developments on display is the second phase of the Franz’s Trail development, where Intrawest expects to start construction in the spring of 2003. Franz’s Trail will include more than a dozen retail and service spaces, a pedestrian walkway, and more than 1,500 parking stalls.

Since the development was announced, the developers have fielded several applications for each of the retail and service spaces. After more than a year of consideration for some applicants, contracts are in the process of being signed.

Intrawest’s resort development group will announce "the majority" of the new tenants for Franz’s Trail at the street festival, said Bryan Hawkey, the Commercial Development Manager for Intrawest’s Resort Development Group.

"We are still in the process of completing the contracts with some of the tenants, so we thought it would be good to have a big public unveiling at the street for Franz’s Trail once most of the names are together," he said.

The original plans called for a grocery store, a government liquor store, a bank, a coffee shop, a family restaurant, and a local pub. The family restaurant has since been cut in half in terms of floor space and the pub was removed from the plans on the recommendation of the Resort Municipality of Whistler, which feels there are already enough licensed seats in town.

The construction of the second phase of Franz’s Trail has already been delayed by more than two years as a result of other developments.

Intrawest will be creating a new bridge and overpass on Highway 99, allowing Whistler Creek and the Valley Trail to run underneath. The creek also has to be relocated to allow more room for the new Franz’s Trail parkade.

All of these developments were complicated by the remediation of the Petro Canada site, after it was discovered in 2000 that an underground fuel tank was leaking.

If construction plans go ahead in the spring, Intrawest hopes to open Franz’s Trail by the American Thanksgiving weekend in November of 2003.

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