Opponents of a proposal to redevelop a large Walnut Grove lot into six smaller lots packed Langley Township council chambers on Monday, Oct. 21.
There were more than 100 people in the audience and about 40 of them spoke at the evening public hearing, all but three against the idea of rezoning a one-acre parcel at 204 Street and 93A Avenue into six smaller lots to accommodate single family homes.
They said the proposal would erode the character of their community, increase traffic and drive down property values, while a spokesman for the developer, Green Grove Homes Ltd., said the plan is within the community plan density guidelines set in 1979 for the area. While the development would increase traffic, it would not drive down property values, the developer said.
Opponent Andre Larouche said residents weren’t given much advance warning of the proposal, only a few signs that went up briefly and were taken down quickly.
Despite that, Larouche said he was able to gather 73 names on a petition against the proposal from his neighbours.
“Only three people refused to sign,” Larouche said, the same ones who spoke at the hearing.
Another opponent of the plan, long-time resident Bill Holliday, said he wanted to preserve the current neighbourhood the way it is.
“I don’t agree with all these crammed-in little houses,” Holliday said.
Speaking for the developer, Robert Thompson said the houses that would be built on the smaller lots will be detached single-family houses, not “high-density” housing as defined by the Township.
He promised high-quality materials and good-looking houses that would fit in with look of the other homes in the area.
As for the traffic concerns expressed by some residents, Thompson said the only way to have no increase in traffic would be to do nothing at all with the property.
A final decision on the proposal will be made at a future council meeting.