Council on a toot

City politicians are suspicious of whistle blowers. As a result, the favoured name of the newest Whitehorse subdivision is now in question.

City politicians are suspicious of whistle blowers.

As a result, the favoured name of the newest Whitehorse subdivision is now in question.

City staff proposed calling the development Whistle Bend, referring to a dogleg in the Yukon River where steamships would blow their whistles to alert one another and avoid collisions.

Streets within the neighbourhood could even be named after paddlewheelers that navigated the river over the years, added staffers.

Those street names could include Aksala, Casca, Gleaner and Keno.

And the Whistle Bend name was supported by the 70 citizens who attended the charrette that was held concerning the development.

But wary politicians were not easily swayed.

“I don’t have a problem with the name so much as the fact that 70 people are making the decision,” said councillor Dave Austin.

“If 2,000 signatures are needed on a petition to make city council act on things, I’m not sure why 70 people get to name a subdivision.

“I’d like to see some sort of different process for this where more people have a say.”

He suggested the subdivision naming might be a good question during the next municipal election.

Councillor Florence Roberts asked to defer the naming for a while in order to do some further research.

She also asked that the name remain Porter Creek Bench as long as possible so that people don’t get confused.

It’s important to decide the name to simplify the planning process, said staff.

Both names, Whistle Bend and Porter Creek Bench, are currently being used by the public and by planners.

Councillor Jeanine Myhre asked whether the story of the gold-rush whistle blowing was even true.

“I’m sure it’s true,” laughed councillor Dave Stockdale. “People wouldn’t make that up if it wasn’t true.”

Administration said they’d look into it.

Other names suggested for the subdivision were Mountainview, Whitehorse Downs, River Park, Trail Valley, McCauley Creek and Crystal Heights.