On Sept. 8, I attended a public hearing at Surrey City Hall for a proposed subdivision from an area where there is no Neighbourhood Concept Plan in place.
The corporate report prepared as part of the process specifically cautioned council that Surrey’s Official Community Plan requires an NCP before approval, in order to avoid potential problems with infrastructure, engineering, transitions between land uses and a host of other issues, not the least of which is lack of public consultation.
It further stated that, "The NCP process was developed as a result of the problems that the City experienced in relation to allowing development to occur in the absence of a proper holistic plan."
When a concerned taxpayer asked why this development could possibly proceed when the NCP for West Clayton (which hasn’t reached Stage 2 completion) isn’t yet in place, Mayor Dianne Watts interjected that: "All applications have to wait. It’s a process, a policy that’s been in place since we started the NCP process I think back in the 1980s. So nothing, there’s no application that will come before council in Stage 1 that will get approved. It will not happen; it cannot happen; it has never happened."
Perhaps Mayor Watts has forgotten the fact that she and her Surrey First council approved a 36-lot subdivision in our peaceful suburban Grandview Heights neighbourhood last June 23, despite the fact that there is no NCP in place for our area. This decision was overwhelmingly opposed by area homeowners. We haven’t forgotten.