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

Saanich rides ahead with Active Transportation Plan

Saanich plans to double the share of all trips made by active transportation by 2050.

Suman, mom of Reena Virk, has died

Mother of 1997 murder victim became an activist against bullying

CRD tightens leash on dog walkers

Five regional parks in Sooke now have new restrictions on dogs

Fire in Sooke hills park likely caused by campfire

Crews currently focus on hot spots

Remains of two people found in Ucluelet

Officials have not said whether or not the remains belong to Ryan Daley or Dan Archbald

Canada won’t ‘play politics’ on U.S. migrant children policy

The U.S. government is under fire over its ”zero tolerance” policy

Drive-thru voting in Saanich crashes over environmental concerns

Environmental concerns over climate change could stall drive-thru voting in Saanich. Angila… Continue reading

Independent schools continue to top Fraser Institute secondary school list

Think tank says its ratings are fair to all schools, public and private

Former Somali child refugee fights to stay in Canada

Former child refugee Abdoul Abdi’s judicial review set for today in Halifax

U.S. border separations ripple through midterm campaigns

Several Republicans to break from President Donald Trump amid boarder separation issues

AFN chief accused of being too close to Trudeau

Perry Bellegarde insists he is not that close to the Liberals as elections looms

Three injured after industrial explosion in Newfoundland

The roof of the warehouse was blown off in the explosion near St. John’s

Ottawa Senators trade Mike Hoffman, less than a week after allegations involving partner

Following the trade Senators make no mention of allegations against Hoffman’s partner

Most Read