Richard Leblanc, seen here on the farm in September, is disappointed in the ALC’s decision. (Hugo Wong/News Staff)

Another setback for Woodwynn Farms

Proposal to house up to 40 people denied by ALC

The Creating Homefulness Society, which owns Woodwynn Farms, experienced another setback this weekend in their plans to turn the 193-acre property into a farm operated by people recovering from addiction.

The Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) has denied an application to allow two acres of land in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) to house and feed up to 40 people. A key aspect of the Society’s proposal required residents to live and work in the same place.

Richard Leblanc, the founder and executive director of the Society, wrote in an email that “as the founder of this project, I cannot quite articulate my oh-so-deep level of disappointment.

“While our Board of Directors and our core funders are somewhat at their wits end, my own resolve is only temporarily shaken.”

This latest application, which was forwarded to the ALC from Central Saanich in March of 2017, is a followup to a 2011 application from Leblanc which included plans for a dormitory and a mess hall. It was also denied at the time.

In their 2012 decision, the ALC stated that it believed “while the Commission has compassion for the issue at hand, it does not believe that the construction of facilities for the housing and programming needs of the programs participants needs to be located within the ALR.” It recommended that nearby non-ALR land be considered instead.

The latest proposal called for ‘tiny homes’ or trailers which could be dismantled if necessary, and washrooms and kitchen facilities in a “small modular building on a temporary foundation.”

The decision, dated Nov. 9, 2017 and signed by Frank Leonard, chair of the ALC executive committee, acknowledged that addiction, mental health and homelessness were provincial concerns and Leblanc’s application was meant to address those, but the ALC was designed to preserve agricultural land.



reporter@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Graduating Saanich students have overcome hardship

Claremont and Reynolds Grade 12s among the recipients of scholarship from Horation Alger Association

Victoria Harbour most polluted on B.C. coast: study

City’s industrial past and more recently, pharmaceuticals, create high levels of pollutants

Watch for high winds today and tomorrow

A wind warning is in effect for Greater Victoria. According to Environment… Continue reading

Experts to capture and collar 20 female deer in Oak Bay starting this month

Does sedated, examined, collared and ear tagged in latest phase of deer management plan

Victoria dog attacked by otters off Dallas Road

Off-leash dogs and wildlife can make for a poor mix, veterinary staffer says

WATCH: Vancouver Island man catches dashcam video of near head-on crash

Video shows oncoming van cross over centre line

B.C. man brings dog to court as ‘best witness’

Man is defending himself on charges of uttering threats, possessing weapon for dangerous purposes

Vancouver artist’s cartoon of Florida school shooting resonates

Cartoon shows football coach, one of the victims, meeting others killed in school shootings

Trudeau family arrives in India for state visit

Seven-day visit includes meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Military seeks DNA experts to help ID missing war dead

Federal program recovers, identifies and arranges burials for Canada’s nearly 28,000 missing war dead

Saanich councillor wants tax credits for political donations

A Saanich councillor would like to see tax credits for residents who… Continue reading

St. Michael’s advance to finals at Senior Girls Basketball Provincials

St. Michael’s University School of Saanich and Alberni District Secondary School (Port… Continue reading

B.C. files new legal action against TransMountain pipeline

Province tries to uphold City of Burnaby bylaws, provoking Alberta

Reports of money laundering in B.C. real estate ‘troubling’: attorney general

News report alleges people connected to fentanyl trade are using B.C. real estate to launder money

Most Read