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Back Politics Politics City Beat Committee Votes 8 to 1 to Protect Southlands From Developer

Committee Votes 8 to 1 to Protect Southlands From Developer

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The Southlands in Tsawwassen

The Tsawwassen Area Plan committee has recommended that Delta’s municipal council retain the current agricultural designation on the Spetifore Farmlands now known as the Southlands and adopt it as such into the official community plan. The committee met yesterday evening for a final discussion on how the recommendations in their report would be presented to city council. The meeting had to be diverted to the main council chambers to accommodate the influx of people wishing to attend. The contentious nature of the proposed Southlands development has been a rallying point for the battle hardened citizens of Tsawwassen. Land developer, Sean Hodgins was in attendance as the committee deliberated over the parcel of land that his family has held for over 20 years.

A unanimous consensus couldn’t be reached as one member of the committee spoke out against maintaining the current agriculture zoning. Helen Kettle, who served on the Century Groups community planning team, was alone in voicing her concern that people in favour of the development weren’t being represented in the document. In the end it was agreed that staff would add a disclaimer to the policy statement:

“The Southlands: The existing Tsawwassen Area Plan has policies related specifically to the lands known as the “Southlands”. It is recommended that the existing land use designation of AGR be retained for these lands. (added)A consensus on this policy issue was not reached among Committee members.”

"While it is certainly a positive step forward, it is unfortunate that a single dissension results in a statement about a lack of consensus,” said Dana Maslovat, co-founder and spokesperson of the group Southlands the Facts. “Another section of the TAP was not unanimously supported but no statement about lack of consensus was put into the Committee report."

The Tsawwassen Area Plan Committee may have one more gathering prior to being struck but their heavy lifting is done. The document will now be prepared by staff and presented to Delta council on August 30th for ratification. It is expected that the public hearings will take place sometime in the early fall.


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