Farmland not a park

Council shouldn't panic and spend even administrative costs on making a park out of the farmland on Watkiss Way

Don’t be panicked into spending even administrative costs on making a park out of the farmland on Watkiss Way, instead think carefully about priorities.

You should be asking if that is the best location for a treed park, given the heavily treed Cuthbert Holmes within easy bicycling distance of Watkiss Way (or a short bus ride), with dense forest that is not used much and is unsafe to use because of troubled people in it. (And further in the other direction the same at Thetis Lake, accessible by bus in summer, plus smaller parks in the general area of Watkiss Way.) Why not spend for neighbourhood micro-parks that young children can play in?

Activists are trying to stampede you, a tactic in their ratchet approach.

The Strawberry Vale Community Association is hypocritical in opposing farming while its web page is headed by a photograph of a field of stooked grain and some cows. That’s “local food production”, by the way, a current eco-panic effort that has been used against property owners elsewhere in Saanich (while council did not offer nearby park land that is in the ALR). Mr. Vandekerkhove is clearing the land to grow food for animals, that may provide food for humans (or the large pets called horses).

The Habitat Acquisition Trust is a biased source by definition because it exists to promote non-human use of land.

And there are the usual NIMBYs who think they should own the view – using someone else’s property at no cost to themselves. Plus the selfish people who want taxpayers to spend on a treed park next to where they live. Why don’t they put their money where their mouth is and buy the land? You’ll find that people’s “love” is shallow when they have to work to live, as all honest humans do.

Perhaps Victoria General Hospital could purchase the land for a park that its customers and visitors can use, though growing hay on the land might improve approaches for the helicopter ambulances in Instrument Meteorological Conditions by eliminating some obstructions in the flight path (which is shallow in IFR operations).

Keith Sketchley

Saanich