Better communication needed from Ministry of Transportation

Re: Saanich councillor questions project’s environmental impact, Aug. 29, Saanich News

I applaud Coun. Derman’s efforts to encourage the provincial Ministry of Transportation to communicate and work with Saanich on the mitigation of impacts to parklands and neighbourhoods.

It’s a difficult position to take, I’m sure. I too have had difficulty getting a response to my inquiries from the Ministry regarding the impacts  of the project (and strategies to mitigate) including parklands, Garry oak meadows, trails and nearby schools. I was concerned to recently learn they are taking more parkland than what was announced earlier, and how close the highway will be to schools, wiping out the Garry oak buffer zone. I wondered if the Galloping Goose route could be modified to run alongside the school and thus retaining the hillside. many trees and ecosystem.

A recent project report includes many of these community concerns and hopefully they will improve the approach, and communicate to stakeholders. Failure to address these issues may have many negative impacts on the environment, parks, schools, businesses and neighbourhoods in the area. There is no other major overpass intersection with such established neighbourhoods all around it. Many of us are awaiting the next steps.

B. WeatherstonSaanich