Close to 14 acres of land adjacent to the French Creek Estuary has been designated as parkland and protected from future development. - Karly Blats photo

Group worries about loss of trees, wildlife if development progresses near French Creek Estuary

Save French Creek Estuary Land says protection efforts don’t go far enough

Close to 14 acres of land adjacent to French Creek has been saved from future development and designated as parkland. Although campaign members with the Save French Creek Estuary Land organization support the land protection effort, they don’t think it goes far enough.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed on Dec. 11 by members of the Friends of French Creek Conservation Society (FFCCS), the French Creek Residents’ Association (FCRA) and with developer Quinn Griesdale of French Creek Estates and French Creek House Ltd, to designate close to 14 of the 23 acres owned by French Creek Estates as parkland.

This will see the estuary lands, low lands and a significant part of the upland treed areas protected for future generations.

Related: Close to 14 acres of estuary lands protected from development

“This Memorandum of Understanding hinges upon the sale and development of the remaining nine acres of land to a developer from Surrey, B.C. who plans to build approximately 40 to 50 dwellings there,” said Save French Creek Estuary Land member Denise Foster. “Many residents are voicing their alarm at the accelerating loss of trees in the Regional District of Nanaimo and how it is changing the livability of our community. If this development goes ahead, the last swath of second growth Coastal Douglas fir forest remaining between Parksville and Qualicum, disappears, along with its wildlife, including some species at risk.”

The Save French Creek Estuary Land group have other “serious concerns” regarding the MOU.

According to a press release from the group, a clause in the MOU states the transfer of the park land is also dependant on “the re-zoning and development applications being in place for French Creek House.”

French Creek House Ltd. is the parent company of French Creek Estates and has proposed a large development on the Marina side of the estuary with plans for a number of five story condos, substantial commercial space, and additional residential units, according to the press release.

The MOU contains a specific clause requiring re-zoning and development applications being in place for the development on the Marina side of the estuary in order for the 14 acres of land on the west side of the estuary to be transferred as park land.

Elkay Developments Ltd. has indicated plans for 40 to 50 dwellings on nine of the 23 acres of land.

Under the wording of the MOU, these dwellings could be built, then a discharge of the MOU could occur if re-zoning and development applications on the Marina side are not in place.

Foster said the Save French Creek Estuary Land campaign will continue to aim for greater protection than the MOU offers and to work in partnership to acquire additional land for a community park.

The group recently launched a new website (www.savefrenchcreekestuaryland.ca) with information about the proposed development and a petition that aims to “save coastal forest Estuary land.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Qualicum Beach soccer club assists young player in quest to attend elite European academy

Eagles donate $750 to Franks, who plans to further career in Portugal

WATCH: Berwick Qualicum Beach residents back with another music video

Residents and staff dance to ‘Drunken Sailor’ by The Irish Rovers

Virtual Qualicum school district meeting includes talk of return to class, masks and more

SD69 to hold town hall discussion featuring questions from parents

Qualicum Beach woman reunited with wedding ring she lost in Nanaimo

Woman ‘over the moon’ after getting ring back, say RCMP

‘Don’t kill my mom’: Ryan Reynolds calls on young British Columbians to be COVID-smart

‘Deadpool’ celebrity responds to premier’s call for social influence support

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Garbage truck knocks down lamp post onto pickup in north Nanaimo

Emergency crews respond to Dickinson Crossing plaza mall Friday afternoon

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

VIDEO: World responds to B.C. girl after pandemic cancels birthday party

Dozens of cards and numerous packages were delivered to six-year-old Charlie Manning

Most Read