October 7, 2014 6:39 am
Updated: October 7, 2014 6:42 am

City defers $30K contest to name Saskatoon’s newest bridge

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Watch above: what’s in a name?

SASKATOON – When crossing Saskatoon’s newest bridge, a blank sign greets motorists followed by the words South Saskatchewan River.

The city’s intent is to fill that blank with a name but the bridge has yet to be officially titled.

During the city’s planning and development committee meeting Monday, a report was presented detailing options of a naming contest.

City administration says the contest would cost approximately $30,000.

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“It’s mainly communication and engagement, media, awareness. We also have to remember that it can’t simply be held online because many people don’t have access to online means,” said Alan Wallace, manager of planning and development.

Ward 9 City Councillor Tiffany Paulsen asked administration to detail logistics of a naming contest in June 2013. The bridge opened in July 2013.

Paulsen feels the hefty price tag and city administration’s delay in detailing a contest is an attempt to quash the idea.

“It wasn’t particularly difficult or onerous from my perspective,” said Paulsen, disappointed with the report.

“I’m not in favour of spending $30,000 to create input.”

Paulsen said Saskatoon Media Group has been in touch with her in an attempt to partner on the contest by assisting with the public input process. She is hopeful this could minimize the cost.

The decision has been deferred to the next monthly planning and development meeting.

There are other options available including permanently applying the existing, Circle Drive South Bridge, name.

The city could also opt to proceed with a small scale naming contest. By eliminating promotional contest activities, the cost would be minimized.

Two new bridges are expected to open in Saskatoon in 2018 as part of the North Commuter Parkway Project. In Monday’s report, city administration suggested a naming contest, at the appropriate time, which would include all three bridges.

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