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Controversy continues to swirl around Qualicum Beach development

Nature preservation society sends town legal memorandum

Controversy continues to swirl around a development on private land in Qualicum Beach.

This week, the Qualicum Nature Preservation Society issued a press release, saying they want the town to “rescind the alleged verbal exemption for Ballard Fine Homes’ development of a long protected wetland lot.”

The lot in question is on the corner of Laburnum Road and Island Highway. The town said 1/10 of the land is being used, with two homes being built on the land and that an environmental report was done.

The town’s most recent response said although the land is sensitive, two single-family dwellings are permitted within the current zoning. The town said a stop-work order has not been issued, but there is a current delay in activity so the town can review work done so far and “ensure all the required documentation is in place.”

“The construction activities that are taking place are compliant with the zoning bylaw designation that was established more than 25 years ago and as such, the matter was not subject to a council review or decision,” read a May 6 release from the town.

READ MORE: Petition against development of wetlands area in Qualicum Beach garners nearly 2,000 signatures

The QNPS says it should go farther than reviewing work done so far and are suggesting a restoration of the lot. They worked with West Coast Environmental Law to send the town a legal memorandum, which the QNPS said investigated the information the town has provided.

“QNPS suggests that remediation should begin immediately to restore the natural drought and flood mitigation properties of the lot, ensuring the Town has this vital functionality in times of emergency. The society hopes that swift action will mend both the land and the relationship between the Town and its citizens,” read the release.

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