We must value natural environment

The seemingly relentless assault on this area’s natural beauty and environment in the name of “progress” continues unabated.

Parksville, in particular, seems intent on razing every last vestige of the native forest in it’s maniacal pursuit of development and growth.

It is time that Island residents demand and implement a different approach to residential development; one that places a value on the natural environment and recognizes its importance to our ecosystem as well as to our health.

In my opinion, it is desirable to maintain at least some of the trees inherent to the native forest, which is very attractive to the eye and maybe more importantly: both emotionally and mentally beneficial to the inhabitants.

If we must have ever higher density housing models in our more urban centres, then at least replace the postage stamp-sized lots with a more environmentally sensitive and friendly model of housing.

We need to mandate a developmental approach to higher density that doesn’t sacrifice all of the natural environment. This can be accomplished by increasing the number of floors (within reason), spreading out the buildings while limiting open parking areas; thus preserving much of the natural physical beauty of the surrounding environment. The result is a sane, attractive and refreshing approach to housing while recognizing that the natural environment is also an important component of the overall process; not just something to be bulldozed, destroyed, and paved over in the pursuit of profit.

After all, we live in the midst of a rainforest ecosystem, an ecosystem that we need to carefully consider in our developmental mindset. This is the west coast not the bald prairie; our housing options should be built in harmony with and be reflective of that reality.

Murray Chantler

Qualicum Beach

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