An OCP delayed

Blame some of it on the economy, but the proliferation of property sales signs up around the City of Parksville also has got to have a little to do with the stalled official community plan process.

Blame some of it on the economy, but the proliferation of property sales signs up around the City of Parksville also has got to have a little to do with the stalled official community plan process.

The city’s review of its official community plan (OCP) began last year and it’s still not done. And it probably won’t be until 2012.

Not to rub it in, but the Town of Qualicum Beach got theirs done in a much shorter period of time — after starting around the same time as the city did.

It might be unfair to compare the two, but in one respect, Qualicum Beach’s councillors can be judged on their OCP performance come November.

Parksville city councillors will avoid that hornets’ nest by not having their OCP completed until next spring. No chance for the electorate to judge them on it, if they survive the election and pass an OCP in the spring.

In many ways, the OCP sets the tone for growth — or lack of it — in a community. Once complete, it gives residents and builders the chance to see the community’s overall vision for the future — what’s needed and what is not wanted at all. Without the OCP complete, there’s too much uncertainty afoot.

The current municipal council might be working to a certain vision, but a new council after November of this year might change all that.

More uncertainty, then. And a fair share of ‘for sale’ signs on both residential and commercial properties.

There are two sides to this: one, the city stagnates and stays as-is, to the frustration of would-be developers. Two, the city stays as-is, much to the delight of people who fear change.

To reach a balance and find compromise, the city is going to have to rely on their public OCP committees to weather the storm between the current council and the next one.

Blame some of it on the economy, but the proliferation of property sales signs up around the City of Parksville also has got to have a little to do with the stalled official community plan process.

The city’s review of its official community plan (OCP) began last year and it’s still not done. And it probably won’t be until 2012.

Not to rub it in, but the Town of Qualicum Beach got theirs done in a much shorter period of time — after starting around the same time as the city did.

It might be unfair to compare the two, but in one respect, Qualicum Beach’s councillors can be judged on their OCP performance come November.

Parksville city councillors will avoid that hornets’ nest by not having their OCP completed until next spring. No chance for the electorate to judge them on it, if they survive the election and pass an OCP in the spring.

In many ways, the OCP sets the tone for growth — or lack of it — in a community. Once complete, it gives residents and builders the chance to see the community’s overall vision for the future — what’s needed and what is not wanted at all. Without the OCP complete, there’s too much uncertainty afoot.

The current municipal council might be working to a certain vision, but a new council after November of this year might change all that.

More uncertainty, then. And a fair share of ‘for sale’ signs on both residential and commercial properties.

There are two sides to this: one, the city stagnates and stays as-is, to the frustration of would-be developers. Two, the city stays as-is, much to the delight of people who fear change.

To reach a balance and find compromise, the city is going to have to rely on their public OCP committees to weather the storm between the current council and the next one.