What follows is a letter I sent to all Council members regarding Tyee Plaza concerning the comments of Council as reported in the Mirror on July 1st.
I urge all Campbell Riverites to become informed on this redevelopment and voice your opinion.
Dear Mayor and Council,
Please allow me to voice my opinion on the redevelopment proposal at Tyee Plaza.
And remind you that it is just that, a proposal. I can only hope that the statement in the paper saying the owner intends to develop a mixed use residential building at the site is a bit premature.
The problems with this proposal are numerous.
Firstly, let me say that I am in total agreement with Councillors Cornfield and Sampson in voicing the exact same concerns.
The councillors are absolutely correct and I applaud them for being vocal on this.
It is beyond belief that a council could so easily dismiss something as readily identifiable as a covenant of a Crown grant for public parking that is a benefit to all Campbell Riverites.
I’m sorry that Councillor Kerr was so disappointed in Campbell River when he first drove into town.
I’m also perplexed that he could not see the positive changes that have happened in and around the area in question. Perhaps he was daydreaming of the day he would be elected to council to notice it all.
The idea that a building with a footprint of that size will somehow get us more parking is laughable.
No doubt they have done some math on this but, unless you drive a smart car or a moped the reconfigured parking would be a net loss for sure.
Another concern for me, that is not quite clear in the conceptual drawing, is the status of the current art gallery and visitor centre. Is the proponent asking for the removal of this building? If so, that is a non starter.
Correct me if I’m wrong but, this building was a Canada Centennial project and is untouchable. Period. What a slap in the face it would be to the early pioneers of the city to have this building removed.
Councillors Evans and Wright say that Refresh Downtown public sessions have repeatedly said revitalizing Tyee Plaza is a top priority? I can recall no public poll that stated the citizenry wanted an apartment building right smack in the middle of it all.
Wright, as well as Babchuk state council must be fair to the developer if it wants investment in the city? How is what this developer is proposing fair?
A developer who has the wherewithal to invest in projects can do it on some other piece of property. How many others would have thought of similar projects but had enough of a conscience to know that this property was untouchable.
Some on council are quick to paint everyone who would dare to question certain projects on merit or direct benefit to the city as being anti development. Spare me the speech, we have every right to question these things, it’s our hometown and unlike Councillor Kerr I have never been disappointed in Campbell River and as someone who has been here a lot longer then he, I kind of like our vocal citizens who won’t just sit there and take it.
To you Mayor Adams as well as the councillors who voted with you: You made a mistake. To say all you are doing is keeping the conversation going forward is understating it to the Nth degree.
What you have done is send your blessings to the ministry that you are willing to forgo a covenant that was the benefit to all Campbell River in exchange for a proposal that benefits one developer. Shame on you.