December 23, 2010 Undercurrent

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This week's edition of Bowen Island Undercurrent

Text of December 23, 2010 Undercurrent

  • MARTHA PERKINS

    E D I T O R

    Residents of Tunstall Bay are ready to up the ante in their campaign to stop Whitesails Road from being used as the main access into Cape Roger Curtis.

    Ed Booiman, whos been the public voice for the neighbourhood when it comes to lobbying council, says theres a lot of pent-up anger over this.

    He thought there might be an opportunity for council to come up with an alternative route when it was discussed as part of the Official Community Plan update. Hed written a letter asking that Thompson Road be extended into Cape Roger Curtis instead of having people drive through Tunstall Bay. However, council simply passed a motion saying that an alternate route could one day be proposed.

    Booiman isnt happy with the resolution because it has no timeframe and relies on the owners of the land to make an application. He thinks the onus is on council to stop Tunstall Bay from being used as a thoroughfare to the 59 new lots in Cape Roger Curtis.

    If council makes no further move to address the neighbourhoods concerns, then Booiman says the residents will take their frustration to the streets.

    As of January 1, he says residents will let driv-ers going into Cape Roger Curtis know that Whitesails Road was not intended as the primary access. Many of the drivers - primarily people doing work on the development of the property are known to the residents.

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    Warm wishesto you & yours this Holiday Season.Holiday Season.

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    William and Kate up closeRussell Hackney is creating portrait of the royal couple for Stoke-on-Trent

    Working togetherGarden club and municipality landscape hill overlooking ferry wharf

    Christmas quizGet into teams to test your knowledge of all things Christmasy

    FRIDAY DEC. 23, 2010V O L . 3 8 , N O . 4 6

    Watch for more online at: WWW.BOWENISLANDUNDERCURRENT.COM

    75 including HST

    A HEART-WARMING, SNOWMAN MELTING SONG When BICS students went to Bowen Court to share some Christmas songs, they saved the best till last, including their rendition of Melton, the Warm-Hearted Snowman. Melton loves Christmas so much that it makes his heart glow, but thats not a good thing if youre a snowman, as Thomass expression illustrates. More photos page 2. Martha Perkins photo

    Working together makes things happen: MP WestonMARTHA PERKINS

    E D I T O R

    By working together we can achieve great things, says MP John Weston.He points to the successes of the past

    year as proof of the benefits of co-oper-ation and open communication between his office and the Bowen community.

    On Bowen Island, the turf field light-

    ing was installed and work continued on the sewage treatment plan upgrade, both with federal funding assistance. Local parents Michael Segal and Andrea Bastin used the MPs office to success-fully lobby the Canadian government to allow them to bring their adopted sons home from Ghana. And Parks Canada is working with the community to discuss if its feasible, and advisable, to create a national park on the island.

    Weston also visited the Orchard treat-ment centre to discuss with staff and clients why his private members bill against the production of crystal meth is so important,

    Its been such an active year on Bowen, he said in a telephone inter-view a few days after he flew back to the riding for the Christmas break.

    continued, PAGE 8

    Tunstall residents demand new access to CRC

    continued, PAGE 2

  • 2 T H U R S D A Y D E C E M B E R 2 3 2 0 1 0 W W W. B O W E N I S L A N D U N D E R C U R R E N T. C O M

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    Members of Seniors Keeping Young, including Anne Manning, Howard Leach, Jan Furst and Nairn Knipe, above, were delighted when students from BICS came to Bowen Court to spread Christmas cheer through music. The performers included, below left, Colleen and Kristen, and below centre, Noah. Martha Perkins photos

    Booiman thinks drivers will want to respect the neighbourhoods feelings, much like people dont like to cross picket lines.

    If nothing is done after one month, then Booiman says residents are ready to put signs on their lawns saying that Whitesails Road isnt the access road to the Cape.

    Booiman says that if you go back into the records of road development, the main access to Cape Roger Curtis was supposed to be Thompson Road. But it ends at the top of a hill at the edge of a chunk of Crown land. The Crown land includes Fairy Fen. He says Whitesails Road was supposed to be the second-ary access, gated to allow emergency access only.

    Our issue is not with Fairy Fen or the own-ers of Cape Roger Curtis, Booiman says. (His letter to the editor appears in this weeks Undercurrent.) Were talking about the original intent for Thompson Road to be the primary access.

    Several years ago, the owners of Cape Roger Curtis applied for approval to build an access road through the Crown land from Thompson Road. It was opposed by council, in part because of concerns over potential damage to Fairy Fen, which is an environmentally sensitive area at the head of the Huzar Creek watershed.

    Peter Drake, chair of the Bowen Island Conservancy, which successfully helped create the Fairy Fen reserve, says the concerns were about the proposed route of the road. It was feared that thered be run off into the fen, and also environmental degradation by the road work.

    Wed be very reticent to anything happening that would affect the Fairy Fen watershed, he says.

    Drake says that the Conservancy would likely be willing to look at a different route, one which goes to the right of a bluff at the top corner of the Crown land. It might be less invasive than the originally proposed route.

    Booiman says that hed be happy if at least council did a proper survey of the land to see if an acceptable access from Thompson Road could be found. As to not allowing access from Thompson Road to protect Fairy Fen, he says people are already going into the property every day.

    He wants council to take the neighbourhoods concerns more seriously. If you go to the street and listen to the people, there are so many peo-ple unhappy with this, he says. It could easily escalate and become a huge issue because the municipality is not listening to people.

    Mayor Bob Turner understands Booimans frustrations over traffic but says hes asking for something that has no immediate solution.

    Turner says Whitesails Road was intended to be the access to Cape Roger Curtis, which is why its configured the way it is and comes right to the property line. The road designations in the OCP refer to the level of service the various roads can expect and are based on the volume of traffic; for instance, the more houses a road provides access to, the prompter the response by road crews when it comes to road plowing, etc. The road designations are not for the type of traffic, as in access for the neighborhood only or access to another neighborhood.

    As to Booimans request that the end of Whitesails Road be closed in the same way that the top of Bishops Hill is gated to prevent through access, Turner says Bishops Hill was closed because the steep grade of the road made it a safety hazard in the winter.

    Turner says councils resolution in regards to access to Cape Roger Curtis was to open the door for the owners to propose another route should further development of the property be proposed.

    As to Thompson Road or Cromie Road being considered as new access points into Cape Roger Curtis, Turner says they are all in the realm of whats possible but there is no intention to pur-sue them as alternate access roads at present.

    continued from PAGE 1

    Christmas craft fair planning for its next 25 yearsMARTHA PERKINS

    E D I T O R

    After celebrating its 25th anni-versary, the Christmas craft fair at Bowen Island Community School is looking for ways for the annual tradition to thrive for the next 25 years.

    This years craft fair was a great suc-cess, says organizer Sarah Haxby. We want to revamp it and change it around so the next 25 years will be great, too.

    The craft fair is a major fundraiser for the Community School Association, which supports student activities at BICS. This years event raised in the

    neighbourhood of $5,200.Its a massive undertaking which

    relies heavily on dozens of volunteers. Some of those volunteers have been helping take care of the myriad of details and duties since the craft fairs origins.

    However, Haxby says, the dynam-ics of community volunteering have changed drastically in 25 years. The population has tripled but there are the same number of