Letter: Development near Chemainus contrary to OCP

The 9090 TCH development contrary to our OCP

Development near Chemainus contrary to OCP

Our municipal government has deceived us into believing that our OCP would have meaning! After a lengthy process of consultation, and at significant expense to taxpayers, our OCP was adopted on Aug. 17, 2022 but already the MNC is ignoring it.

The MNC recently filed an application with the Agricultural Land Commission that was subsequently approved, allowing our municipality to develop a ROW on ALR land in an area designated by the OCP as Agriculture, Forestry, and Conservation. Their application to the ALC will literally pave the way for the development at 9090 TCH [Trans-Canada Highway] to proceed. Not only is the 9090 TCH development contrary to our OCP, but using a quiet, dead end road in the ALR to facilitate this development is also contrary to our OCP. An agent for the MNC was able to convince the ALC panel that funnelling traffic from this housing development through our quiet, rural road in the ALR would not have an impact to agricultural pursuits for the folks living on that road.

According to the Local Government Act (RSBC) Part 14, Division 4, s.478(2)(a): “All…works undertaken by a council…after the adoption of an official community plan must be consistent with the relevant plan.” What are the consequences when a municipality fails to abide by the laws that they create? I don’t know, but it is the duty of our minister of Municipal Affairs to ensure that local governments comply with their bylaws.

If you are a taxpayer and are concerned about skyrocketing taxes, then please take a drive down Henry Road west of the TCH and decide for yourself if you agree that this road will not require any upgrades to accommodate the construction of the TCH housing project and the traffic from 100 new housing units. Who is going to pay for those upgrades? Not the developer. Who is responsible for liability relating to foreseeable road and traffic concerns? Not the developer.

If you think this course of action is outrageous then please send a letter to your mayor and council to let them know. If you think the MNC should be required to comply with the laws they enact, then please send a letter to the attorney general of B.C. asking them to force the MNC to comply with our OCP (as required by law). If you are a local farmer and don’t agree with the ALC when they determined that creating a traffic corridor through ALR land will not have a negative impact on agricultural operations then please send a letter to the ALC (FILE: 65023 – Resolution #366/2022).

If you want to speak out against this I would suggest that you do so immediately because the developer has already commenced work preparing their site, and thanks to the support of our MNC, they are ready to proceed with their development plans.

In the words of Margaret Mead: “Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has.”

Heather Thomas