A woman walks up the steps at Goose Spit on May 21st, 2018. Photo by Vista Radio staff
COMOX, B.C. – The popular Nob Hill Staircase at Goose Spit park is re-opening on Saturday after nearly two months of renovations.
Often referred to as the ‘Goose Grind,’ the staircase between Goose Spit Park and Yates Road has been closed since Sept. 10 to improve the existing stairs which were built in 2011 and have been well worn by exercise devotees.
New stairs of a similar design have been in put in place, and will be ready for climbers starting on Nov. 3.
The portion of Nob Hill Greenway, from Goose Spit Park to Yates Road, has been closed during construction.
Hawkins Greenway along Hawkins Road provided an alternate pedestrian route.
The climbing stairs from Yates Road to Moore Road, and Mulholland Drive remained open.
According to the CVRD, the earthen stair design has been chosen for its relative ease of construction and cost effectiveness, meeting the geotechnical and environmental constraints of the steep sand slope, and providing a preferred landing surface for those running stairs for exercise.
The new stair casings are made of aluminum and are designed to provide long term resistance against the severe marine environment, exposure from sun and wind, and extensive use by visitors.
Aluminum stair casings allow for light, hand-built stair construction, which the district notes is mandatory for the steep sand slope.
Once the stairs are in place, Nob Hill will be planted with resilient, native, sand dune plants to help stabilize the sand slope.
When the staircase opens, pedestrians and pets will be asked to stay off the slope and use the staircase only. Plants play an important role in preventing erosion on these steep slopes as the plant roots hold loose soil in place, while leaves, stems and flowers protect soils from wind and sun exposure.
New on this staircase will be “pedestrian pullouts”, similar to highway pullouts, to let faster pedestrians pass. Pullouts will also provide the opportunity for users to catch their breath and enjoying the view of the Comox Harbour and Beaufort Range.