Moratorium proposal threatens new hospital

The hospital lands rezoning passed without a single NIMBY comment

Moratorium proposal threatens new hospital

If passed on Wednesday, Jan. 15, the Christopher Justice motion will annul the social licence that the residents and land owners of the Bell McKinnon Corridor (“BMC”) gave to the new CDH land rezoning.

The hospital lands rezoning passed without a single NIMBY comment from those of us most affected. Why? Because there was a clear understanding from North Cowichan council and staff that the Gold award winning BMC Local Area Plan (LAP) would be implemented when the hospital was developed.

The Justice motion (without public engagement) rejects the BMC LAP and sets the future of the new CDH in jeopardy.

Here is a passage from Page 39 of the NC staff report regarding the Justice motion going to council on Wednesday: “Residential developments within Category 2 areas that would be impacted by the motion in the Maple Bay corridor area includes Stonehill Farm (300 lots/units) and Kingsview (1190 lots/units). The Category 2 lands in the Bell McKinnon Road area predominately retain the rural residential zoning that applied prior to Council’s endorsement of the Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan in 2018 and would generally require rezoning before those lands can be developed in accordance with the Plan. The proposed motion would essentially table any rezoning or subdivision of the Bell McKinnon area north of Norcross Road until completion of the OCP. This could impact the new hospital in that other development projects would not be participating in the funding and construction of the extension of sewer and other required infrastructure. It may also impact the ability to further Council’s strategic priority of developing specialty services in and around the new Cowichan District Hospital.”

The BMC is North Cowichan’s smartest growth centre.

It’s closer to the Cowichan Valley’s Core Services than any other growth area. Lower infrastructure costs, shorter travel times and lower GHGs.

Read all about the Gold Award winning Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan here: https://www.northcowichan.ca/assets/Departments/Planning~and~Land~Use/docs/Community~Planning/BMLAP_Final%20Version_Oct19-18.pdf

Dave Jackson

Duncan

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