Our quiet Grandview Acres neighborhood has been severely impacted by high-density overdevelopment, so we were relieved when Surrey council approved our request that the area be rezoned to “Rural Designation” last September to protect our acreages from further piecemeal development. (For a detailed overview of the process, visit www.GrandviewStewardship.org).
When it comes to land development, it is widely acknowledged that municipalities have an obligation to grant existing homeowners adjacent to new subdivisions meaningful input as part of the development process. Municipalities are also obliged to protect existing neighbourhoods from encroaching overcrowding and overdevelopment by creating an appropriate buffer of similar frontages, density and design on the periphery of adjacent high-density subdivisions.
Unfortunately, on Nov. 16, council gave final approval to a high-density duplex development directly across 26 Avenue from our single-family homes, despite the fact that 350 of our neighbours signed a petition opposing the plan. In the process, once again council ignored Surrey’s own development policies regarding “sensitive” transitions between established suburban neighbourhoods and new urban subdivisions, which is confirmation that the city’s policies are toothless when it comes to protecting the rights of homeowners.
This decision sets a horrible precedent for Surrey residents faced with the prospect of green development notification signs across the street.