A Surrey Councillor wants the city to buy up more green space for parks.

Massive park purchase proposal to be explored by Surrey

Coun. Bob Bose wants the public to decide purchase of green space at fall referendum.

Surrey staff are exploring the idea that the city purchase up to 600 acres of property for parkland.

The idea was brought forward Monday night by Coun. Bob Bose, who wants the city to preserve some of the more ecologically sensitive areas identified in a green master plan.

Bose said the most important parts of the Ecosystem Management Study cannot be achieved within Surrey’s existing parkland acquisition program. He said that ”time is of the essence if these lands are not to be given up to development pressure.”

Bose wants the issue put to public referendum in time for the Nov. 19 civic election.

Coun. Barinder Rasode said Bose’s motion raised more questions than it provided answers.

Foremost on her mind was how much property would be required, where it is located, and who would be footing the bill for it?

In the latter case, she said, it would likely be the taxpayers. And if Bose’s estimates of between 200 and 600 acres are accurate, Rasode says residents would be facing a 20 per cent tax hike to pay for it. That would amount to about $260 for the owner of the average home in Surrey valued at $531,000.

The amount of the tax increase is an extremely rough estimate because it’s unknown how much land the city would be required to buy.

Rasode said she’s a bit bothered that the initiative is being brought forward so late, with very little time to educate council, let alone the public, which would ultimately be deciding the issue by referendum.

It’s expected a staff report will be back before council after the August break, likely by Sept. 12.

Bose said the notion of securing the land will allow Surrey to become a better place.

”Surrey is in a unique position to be a better kind of city,” Bose said. ”But we need a strategy and we need a mandate from the people.”

@diakiw

 

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey Police Board approves creation of municipal force at first-ever meeting

Process for hiring a police chief to ‘start immediately’: McCallum

Tree falls across road in Surrey

Crews on scene to clear the debris

Delta Nature Reserve boardwalk realignment to begin this fall

Stretch of boardwalk to be rebuilt to make room for new Highway 91/Nordel Way vehicle ramp

Cloverdale store owner giving away free face shields

Tricia Ellingsen offering more than 200 free protective shields

B.C. announces regional cancer treatment centre to be included in new Surrey hospital

Services expected to include treatment, supportive care, research, education, innovative technologies

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Four activists face charges linked to 2019 Abbotsford hog-farm protest

Mischief and break-and-enter charges laid for incidents on four separate days prior to the protest

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

‘Tiny home’ being built for Abbotsford woman with severe allergies

Online campaign raises $59,000 for custom cargo trailer for Katie Hobson

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

B.C. would not send students back to school if there was ‘overwhelming risk’: Horgan

Plan has left many parents across the province worried about their children’s safety

Most Read