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LETTER: Qualicum Beach development decision could be ‘thin edge of the wedge’

Subdivision proposal draws much debate
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Many citizens of Qualicum Beach may not be aware that town council is close to approving a development that has significant implications on the direction land use is heading in Qualicum Beach.

On May 18, council heard the third reading of a proposal to allow a subdivision development in Qualicum Beach’s iconic forested Estate Lands.

During the discussion, Coun. Westbroek argued that “this (proposal) requires a change to the Urban Containment Boundaries (UCB) and should be subject to a 2023 OCP review. Then the people could take a real good look at the alternatives; protect the forest, protect the properties in the Estate Lands, or do what is being proposed.”

He added: “If the main motion fails, I will move to defer the matter to the next OCP review.”

Sadly, the majority of the council ignored the motion and voted to allow the development of this estate land property without respect for the OCP. Only councillors Westbroek and Skipsey opposed.

The Official Community Plan “proposes to protect the estate residential lands as large lot forested areas. In addition to the tree protection bylaw, the town shall explore further ways to preserve the estate residential forest, including development permit area designation, possible changes to the land use and subdivision bylaw and the increase of the current minimum parcel size.”

This rezoning could be the “thin edge of the wedge,” said Westbroek.

The citizens may want to consider if this is the direction they want to see Qualicum Beach headed.

Doug MacKay-Dunn

Qualicum Beach

READ MORE: Qualicum Beach council gives much-debated housing development third reading

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