Langford considers ending artificial turf program on city boulevards
Langford city council will soon vote on whether to keep installing artificial turf along city boulevards, or go back to using sod.
Some think installing artificial turf along several of Langford’s boulevards was a brilliant idea.
"I think it’s the greatest thing ever invented for boulevards," said resident John Meredith.
Joan Traversy also thinks it looks good.
"I think it looks better than dead grass in the middle of summer," said Traversy.
But others believe it looks a bit tacky.
"It just looks fake," said Dylan Ringma. "You can tell it’s turf."
"Just grow grass," said local Arten Hryvtsov.
In 2017, Langford began laying down turf along some of its boulevards "with the idea that it would save the city and developers money," said Scott Goodmanson, the mayor of Langford.
According to a new Langford staff report, since the city began using the artificial grass, that has not been the case.
"It’s possibly going to cost much more because it eventually wears out and it has to be completely replaced," said Goodmanson.
The maintenance of the turf has turned out to be much more expensive than expected.
"There’s lots of areas that you can see garbage buildup, you can see weeds poking through, and repairs aren’t cheap," said the mayor.
The City of Langford incentivized the turf pilot project, paying 65 per cent of costs to install them, leaving developers to pay the remaining 35 per cent.
Costs for turf has now increased by 64 per cent since the program started.
The study shows the anticipated savings have not been met, and that turf is bad for the environment.
Langford council will vote on Monday night to either continue to install the turf going forward, or go back to sod.
Either way, what isn’t on the table is what to do with the turf that has already been installed.
"If we reverted back to sod, this is step one, and we’ll worry about step two at that point further down the road," said Goodmanson.
Artificial turf is pictured along Constellation Avenue in Langford, B.C. (CTV News)
Feelings are mixed from Langford residents.
"Oh I hope not," said Meredith. "I hope they continue with the project."
"I think that the actual grass looks nicer and it just looks better," said resident Savannah Stone.
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