A South Surrey resident has the blues now that White Rock's blue railings and lampposts along the promenade and pier have been drenched in a sea of black.
Donna Burns noticed the city was painting over the royal blue railings on the West Beach with a "depressing" coat of jet black, and said they will do the same on East Beach.
She said of the previous shade of blue, "It accents the sky and it makes the water look bluer and it's been that way for 20 to 25 years."
Furthermore, she's upset that Dan Bottrill, the city's recently appointed chief administrative officer, OK'd the paint job without consulting locals or the city.
"He made this huge decision without consulting anyone," she said. "Who the heck is he to make such a major change "
Bottrill confirmed he went ahead with the black paint. He said the railings needed maintenance, and rather than keep them blue, he chose to paint them black like the railings along the hump between West and East Beach.
"There were certain sections of that railing that were worse than others," he said. "I made the decision to make it black."
White Rock city council reportedly did not vote on the colour scheme, but Coun. Alan Campbell said council had talked about the new colour.
"I guess it wasn't in stone, but council had certainly discussed it and council went with black," he said. "Black is very fashionable, black is easy to maintain, black blends. The blue is sort of in your face and it doesn't look that classy."
The city did not inform residents of the change, nor were they given an opportunity to voice their opinions.
"This should have been put out to the taxpayers," said Burns. "White Rock people pay high taxes to live there, they should get a say in this."
Bottrill said in response, "I guess some people who don't like it would've liked to have had more of an opportunity to participate."
Burns said she asked Bottrill why he changed the colour and said she was told simply that he liked it.
"He said, 'Well, some people like it,'" she recalled. "I just couldn't help but say, 'Yeah, maybe if they'd just been released from prison.'"
Bottrill said the black blends in better with the beach, and that city council didn't need to get involved with the decision.
"The city makes a lot of decisions on a daily basis," he said. "At the end of the day, it was a decision that I think we needed to just move forward and get the job done. I think I would do it again.
"We've got a gorgeous view out there with the ocean and the sky. The focus really is on the view, not the rail."
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