Regional district says ‘no’ to re-zoning

  • Jul. 23, 2007 5:00 p.m.

Regional district directors have voted not to change the zoning on a North Beach property after the proposal was overwhelmingly opposed at a public hearing last week. Area D director Ian Hetman said at least 85 residents, including chiefs, elders and matriarchs, attended the hearing July 19 in Masset. Thirty people spoke against the rezoning application, which would have allowed the owners to build an eco-lodge and camping facilities on the 41-acre lot, located on North Beach about two kilometres east of Tow Hill. No one except the applicants spoke in favour, Mr. Hetman said. The regional district also received 14 letters on the issue, all except one opposed. Residents raised concerns about the potential damage to the beach and clam beds because of increased traffic (there is no road access to the lot; it can be reached by driving on the beach), Mr. Hetman said. There were also many concerns about a lack of consultation with the band council, with the Council of the Haida Nation, and with the Haida clans that call North Beach home, he said. The private property is deep within the boundaries of Naikoon Provincial Park, and Mr. Hetman said BC Parks had offered to purchase the property but the offer had been turned down by the owners. When regional district directors met July 20 in Sandspit, Mr. Hetman made a motion that the application not be supported. The motion passed with all directors voting in favour.