Proposed growth plan will result in changes

The municipality hired a group of people from out of town to design a brand new Summerland.

Dear Editor:

I sincerely hope that all those people in Summerland whose properties are in the Agricultural Land Reserve have had a chance to view the new map that has been drawn up by Municipal staff, showing the changes intended for our Official Community Plan.

Apparently the municipality hired a group of people from out of town to design a brand new Summerland.

Using an “as the crow flies” approach, these folks used a series of circles centred on our downtown core, where each circle indicated a 10-minute walk starting from downtown, to the next 20 minute circle, and so on.

The idea, I guess, was to exclude all those ALR lands that fall within the 10 minute circle to begin with and then proceed to the 20 minute circle, and so on. If your ALR property falls within those circles, you could see the designation of your farm land change from farming to residential.

A number of things bother me about this.

First, I would hope that anyone with land in the ALR whose property falls within the first few circles would not want to see his land rezoned residential. That’s what I would hope.

However, nearly everyone in town is aware that two of our council members have been trying to get their ALR land excluded for years. This would become a real gold mine opportunity for them.

Secondly, from the map, it appears certain properties along Aeneas Creek might be expropriated for a walking trail into downtown.

Thirdly, a ridge or bluff that runs from the Shewfelt property on Victoria Road North to Garnett Valley has also been included in this proposed change.

I imagine our town planners see this as perfect for residential home construction, giving them a selling factor by offering buyers a bit of a view of the tops of all the homes built below theirs.

As it happens, my home, and part of my orchard, sits on this ridge which extends around a corner leading into Garnett Valley.  Don’t even think about trying to get that excluded.

The big plan, as suggested by our mayor on television, is to remove 200 acres of very viable agricultural land from the proximity of our community’s core in exchange for 250 acres of marginal land that the Municipality owns on the way to Faulder.

The only people to benefit from these changes to our OCP are some developers, realtors and two councillors.

Frank Martens

Summerland

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for Okanagan, Shuswap

Environment Canada is forecasting strong wind gusts, large hail and heavy downpours in parts of the Interior

WorkSafe BC conducted 70 inspections in the Okanagan amid B.C.’s reopening plan

WorkSafe BC has conducted 100 inspections at restaurants across the province since May 19

EDITORIAL: Revisiting alcohol consumption

A proposal to allow alcohol consumption in some public spaces in Penticton deserves consideration

Chute Lake Lodge opens June 1, offering glamping, yurt, and ebike rentals

Escape into the wilderness and #lovelocalpenticton when Chute Lake Lodge reopens for the season

Summerland businesses optimistic as reopening begins

Businesses make plans for restructuring as COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed

11 new COVID-19 cases in B.C. as top doc urges caution amid ‘encouraging’ low rates

Dr. Bonnie Henry also announced that two care home outbreaks would be declared over

Similkameen winery co-owned by Dr. Bonnie Henry

B.C.’s provincial health officer is part of the original ownership group of Clos du Soleil in Keremeos

Shuswap man reported missing by RCMP has been found unharmed

Salmon Arm resident apologizes for having caused anyone concern

Emergency crews rush youth to hospital after quadding accident in West Kelowna

West Kelowna Fire Rescue’s new off-road vehicle was used in the rescue

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Senior man in hospital after unprovoked wolf attack near Prince Rupert

Conservation officers are on site looking for the wolf

VIDEO: NASA astronauts blast off into space on SpaceX rocket

Marks NASA’s first human spaceflight launched from U.S. soil in nearly a decade

Preparations for flooding in the Shuswap accelerate

A sandbagging machine and a crew to run it have been set up in Silver Creek.

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

Most Read