Proposed development raises concerns

Dieppe Road development does not meet local area plan

On Oct. 6, Saanich council approved a major proposed development, estimated value in excess of $25 million, at 4247, 4253 and 4255 Dieppe Road in Saanich. These three properties, located on Dieppe Road at the north end of Douglas Street in North Quadra, are currently used as food processing plant and three residential units. The total site area is approximately 3.13 hectares (7.9 acres) of which approximately 22 per cent is under a high-voltage Hydro transmission line. The current two food processing buildings are partly on a small industrial-zoned land while the rest of the site is A1-Rural. The community’s initial suggestions to retain some land for greenhouses or food production were not accepted for economic reasons.

Essentially there are three components to the proposed development. The first component is a new food processing plant. This component was accepted by the North Quadra Community Associations (NQCA). The second component of 33 townhomes was a contentious component. The third component of nine single family lots was also accepted by NQCA.

The proposed density of 33 townhomes was in excess of 200 per cent than that allowed (10 units per hectare) in the North Quadra Local Area Plan (NQLAP). In addition, there were significant variances in heights and siting proposed for these townhomes. It should be noted that The NQLAP does allow up to 15 (150 per cent higher) units per hectare where a development proposal provides substantial amenities. The substantial amenities are deemed to be in addition to the other development requirements and charges.

Therefore, the local residents were expecting, and were rightly asking for, substantial amenities for this proposed dense development. The amenities offered by the applicants, Fatt’s Poultry Farm Ltd., were inadequate. At the meeting on Oct. 6, I summarized before  council several development projects in North Quadra and elsewhere in Saanich, to demonstrate that the public amenities offered here are meager as compared to the amenities offered, and received, by Saanich and community in the past.

Many neighbours and I requested council to pause; review and reduce the density and height and siting variances for townhomes. There were many other concerns with respect to vehicular and truck traffic volume and noise currently experienced by the neighbours.  The lack of bicycle lanes and sidewalks in the area were also noted as major concerns. Many residents suggested that the expanded industrial plant and 42 new residences would exacerbate the current situation; it will make the current situation worse.

The additional amenities sought by the residents were (a) a three-metre right-of-way for future bicycle lanes; and (b) additional sidewalks on Dieppe and Caen from the industrial plant site to Quadra. Also, there was a recommendation to consider a pedestrian-controlled crosswalk at Caen.

The planner’s flawed report was heavily slanted in favour of the development. Council failed to adhere to the Local Area Plan; was completely blind towards the needs and concerns of the residents; and none of the residents’ concerns were listened to or addressed by council.

In their summations many councillors gave a rhetorical lecture about the need to keep the industrial plant and the jobs there; that was, I might add, pure politicking and somewhat condescending because the residents had accepted the proposed industrial plant.

Only Coun. Derman heard the residents’ concerns; he proposed to seek a right-of way for bicycle lanes and more amenities; and voted against the proposed development.

The planner, having deviated from the NQLAP, skated around giving his opinion that the higher density is aspired in the local area plans. I must add that that is a stretch and suggest such higher densities are generally meant for locations near commercial centres, and not at a location such this.

The final outcome here, in my opinion, was a lack of good judgment. It was a wrong decision which left many residents, including myself, totally dismayed and disappointed.

Haji Charania

Saanich

 

Just Posted

St. Andrew’s Roman Catholic Cathedral in Victoria. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria bishop apologizes for church’s role in residential schools

Bishop Gary Gordon voices commitment to healing and reconciliation

Oak Bay Rotary Club member Lorna Curtis takes over as District Governor of Rotary District 5020 on July 1. (Courtesy Lorna Curtis)
Former Oak Bay recreation director goes international with Rotary

Lorna Curtis takes over as district governor on July 1

Future grads at Oak Bay High will have greater scholarship opportunities available through the Oak Bay Rotary Club. (Black Press Media file photo)
Private donor quadruples donations to Oak Bay Rotary scholarship funds

The club has awarded more than $25,000 to Oak Bay High students

Police are asking opponents of logging near Port Renfrew not to involve their children following additional arrests Saturday. (Black Press Media File)
Police arrest eight protesters including two minors near Port Renfrew Saturday

RCMP ask parents not to involve their children in Fairy Creek logging protests

Elaine Kirwin in her Expedia Cruises office talks about the future of travel. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Sidney travel agency charts course through pandemic

Owner of Expedia Cruises in Sidney expects smooth sailing ahead once travel restrictions lift

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Most Read