John Emery attended Sunday's protest and signed up for a community association.

Brookswood Fernridge residents protest Langley Township development plans

Brookswood Fernridge residents protest in Noel Booth Park Sunday afternoon.

PHOTO: Residents protested Sunday how Langley Township is handling development and planning in Brookswood Fernridge. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance)

Sunday’s protest over development in Brookswood and Fernridge brought out about 250 people.

The afternoon protest in Noel Booth Park included a petition for the public to sign and forms to create a community association.

John Emery raised his two kids in Brookswood, having lived there for 23 years and turned out Sunday to voice opposition to how the Township is going about development.

“I think anything that unites voices is helpful,” he said.

He called the Township’s previous Brookswood Fernridge development process funded by developers as “flawed and unethical.” It ended up bringing together neighbourhood residents.

“It created the environment where we are today. Everybody is coming out. It got people riled up,” he said.

Langley Township tried to update the official community plan (OCP) in 2014, but it was voted down after public outcry over density, population, and concerns over tree protection, aquifer levels, and adequate community services such as hospitals and schools.

A new process is underway now with more public consultation and using consulting firm Modus, but it is not expected to be finished until the end of 2017.

All the properties now in various stages of approval will be developed with 7,000 square foot lots, the minimum allowed under the current community plan.

There are five properties slated to be developed in South Brookswood, all moving forward under the 1987 community plan.

STORY CONTINUES BELOW PHOTO

PHOTO: Most attending the protest Sunday walked from Noel Booth Park to the retail area of Brookswood. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance)

Resident Martin Allen spoke at the protest, noting that he has filed various Freedom of Information requests on issues such as the cost of consultants Modus, environmental reports, water reports and more.

“I want this area to be developed,” he noted. “But I don’t want my neighbourhood, my community to be influences by outside speculators and developers.”

STORY CONTINUES BELOW PHOTO

PHOTO: Martin Allen was one of the speakers at Sunday’s protest. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance)

Resident Michele Connerty said the proposed developments would cost over $1 million, prices families cannot afford.

“This is not affordable housing to our community,” she said.

The neighbourhood is currently home to about 14,000 people. The 1987 official community plan calls for three times that population in Brookswood Fernridge and Connerty said residents are concerned about spot zoning in the absence of an updated OCP that includes residents’ desires.

She noted that there aren’t going to be enough hospital beds, school spaces and other amenities.

“Until these issues are worked out, why would anyone consider developing,” she said. “To go forward with development in this area would be grossly negligent for Township council.”

Connerty encouraged those attending the protest to go to the Township council meeting on July 11 to voice their opinions.

PHOTO: Residents protested Sunday how Langley Township is handling development and planning in Brookswood Fernridge. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance)

Just Posted

Half million dollars change Langley couple’s life

Richard and Frances Laidlaw contemplate travel and moving

Liberal hopeful aims to claim candidate spot in Langley-Aldergrove

Leon Jensen was the 2015 candidate in Langley-Aldergrove.

LETTER: Fort Langley driver lobbies for roundabout signalling

ICBC rules call for drivers to signal when exiting roundabouts.

South Langley community group wants to talk innovative housing

Brookswood-Fernridge Community Association invites people to a meeting about the future of housing.

GREEN BEAT: Opening ‘new roads’ in Langley makes cycling safer

HUB Langley pushed to ‘UnGap the Map’ and create more bike infrastructure throughout the community.

VIDEO: The ‘most cosmopolitan’ of butterflies could migrate to B.C.

The painted lady butterfly will likely arrive this summer from Southern California

Pedestrian killed, two injured in three-vehicle crash in Coquitlam

Road closures in effect following collision

Is it a homicide? B.C. woman dies in hospital, seven months after being shot

Stepfather think Chilliwack case should now be a homicide, but IHIT has not confirmed anything

Sources say Trudeau rejected Wilson-Raybould’s conservative pick for high court

Wilson-Raybould said Monday “there was no conflict between the PM and myself”

First Nations public art piece stolen in Nanaimo

Spindle Whorl went missing over the weekend, according to Nanaimo RCMP

Father-son duo at B.C. Children’s Hospital helps new dads fight depression

The pair teamed up to introduce the only known research-based mindfulness workshop for new dads

Mexican restaurant in B.C. told to take down Mexican flag

General manager of Primo’s Mexican Grill in White Rock: ‘I’ve never heard of anything like this’

B.C. NDP moves to provide tax credits, tax cut for LNG Canada

Provincial sales tax break of $596 million repayable after construction

COLUMN: Smart phone too powerful a tool to yank from students’ hands

Rather than ban them from schools, let’s teach kids to harness their phone’s power and use it properly

Most Read