Coventry Hills community group wants to encourage local exploration

The Little Free Pantry is one location submitted to the Coventry Hills Precious Places Project as a point of interest in the community. The project aims to collect similar sites and information to encourage people to explore the area. SUBMITTED BY NIKKI PIKE

Points of interest in Coventry Hills may soon be a lot easier to find, as a community organization works towards creating stationary maps, and encouraging people to explore the area.

Project Lead Moraig McCabe said she wanted there to be a more active way people and residents could experience the community. Many places such as small parks are often overlooked by passersby, she said.

“We discovered that people don’t know where things are. They don’t know where parks are because they don’t see them when they’re walking around or driving around,” McCabe said.

“We wanted to do wayfinding, but because we can’t use signs, we thought about how we were going to do that and find a loophole.”

The solution was to wrap garbage cans and the local rink water supply box with a community map.

The maps will depict places and things of interest, as well as waypoints for people to find and engage with.

McCabe said Coventry Hills Precious Places Project team wanted to create something more visually pleasing than plastering ordinary maps to trash cans.

“We wanted something interesting… [and] we saw an opportunity to apply for an art grant and decided we would get a local artist to do whatever they could with the information that we gather,” she said.

Creating Coventry has launched a survey for members of the community. There, they can contribute information about the whereabouts of interesting things and places, as well as photos to the project.

“It’s to gather information that people maybe wouldn’t know about.”

Community arts grant received

An artist has yet to be selected for the work, though the call for proposals concluded at the end of last year.

McCabe intends to reach back out to artists who have previously expressed interest.

The project was approved for a $4,500 City community arts grant.

“When people are walking around the community or if they have visitors to the area, they can look at one of these maps and if there’s something of interest, they can look it up on our website and get more information,” said McCabe.

“I would like [these maps] to get people outdoors more and exploring their community. We’re hoping that people will feel less isolated because they will get out and maybe meet neighbours they wouldn’t normally see.”

Residents and those interested in contributing information and photos are invited to take the project survey online and add their own ideas to the maps.

The survey suggests submitting anything from favourite places in Coventry Hills to sites of historical and cultural interest. It also asks for places that those new to the community may not know about.

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