We need your help! Town Council is holding a public hearing at the Elks Hall, 477 Bank Ave, Oliver, BC at 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 (open house starts at 4:00 p.m.). Council is seeking public input a Calgary Developer’s proposal to construct 10 two-story duplex units on the foreshore of Tuc-el-Nuit Lake. Please attend the public hearing and show Town Council that there is widespread community opposition to this proposal.
Here are some points to consider:
The Oliver Community Plan requires that duplexes be located beside existing duplexes and close to commercial areas. If duplex development on the Lake is allowed, where will it stop? The lake will become a condo ‘ghetto’.
Council should be minimizing the number of people living on the Lake and preserving its aesthetic and recreation value for the use and enjoyment of all residents of Oliver; not zoning a proposed redevelopment that increases the number of people living on the Lake and that is totally out of character with the Tuc-el-Nuit community.
Existing residents have respected the riparian setback rules since they have been implemented (living with the 30m setback rather than seeking that it be reduced to 15m like the Developer has done), and have refrained from building homes close to the Lake. Council should require a 30m setback for all new development on the Lake.
Council needs to protect and enhance the fragile ecosystem and biodiversity of this very small Lake likely to be impacted significantly by global warming; rather than increasing the density of housing in very close proximity to the lakefront.
The Developer and the Town Planner argue that the principle of higher density development on the Lake was already established when the Megale Property was included in the Tuc-el-Nuit Mixed Use Plan and when the property was subsequently rezoned for strata lots in 2004. This makes no sense. Neither Town Council, nor staff, can remember how this ever happened, or why it makes any sense. The TEN Mixed Used Plan governs the western ridge, overlooking but some distance from the Lake, and the area behind the ridge. The Megale Property is a lakefront property in a single family residential area.
The Megale Rezoning Application is flawed and cannot properly be approved by Council. The Developer has not provided for the 20 meter wide Lake access required by Provincial law; nor has he offered a conservation covenant to protect the riparian setback and restoration of riparian habitat being required by a Qualified Environmental Professional. Both the Developer and the Town Planner have miscalculated the permitted density, using the area of the whole property rather than the land to be developed (excluding land that the QEP says cannot be developed).
The QEP is requiring that a 15 meter Streamside Environmental Protection Area be established between the proposed development and the Lake; and that the first 5 meters of this protected area be restored to natural riparian habitat – this means the restoration of natural riparian vegetation that will breed frogs, salamanders, snakes, mosquitoes and other insects supportive of fish life in the Lake.
Council is required to enforce the SEPA, but has not implemented the tools it needs to do so. This must be done before Council approves this Application. Council needs to establish a zoning setback from the Lake and to impose a maximum density on the property. It needs to impose negative covenants and implement environmental bylaws to ensure that the SEPA is protected in a natural, undisturbed state. Council must impose fencing requirements to ensure that the restored riparian vegetation is not trampled and restrictions on landscaping to protect the riparian area from the high-density development being proposed for the site.
Please help us protect the Lake by attending the public meeting on Tuesday, October 14th. Show your support and express your view. I am a long term resident of Oliver, living adjacent to the Megale Property. If you would like to discuss further, I am available at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 778-886-9356.
HELP PROTECT TUC-El-NUIT LAKE
ATTEND THE PUBLIC HEARING ON OCTOBER 14