Pitt Meadows Coun. Dave Murray stands near 33 hectares of land that will be excluded from the protected agricultural land reserve.

ALR rules should be updated

More letters on the Agricultural Land Commission approval of Pitt Meadows North Lougheed exclusion application

Editor, The News:

Re: Farmland OK’d for new road, mall (The News, Aug. 16).

This strip of land has not been farmed in years. Some of the land has already been ruined with structural fill. Furthermore, the way I see it, it consists of several small parcels.

And who in his right mind wants to farm there anyway?

Most of South Pitt Meadows good farmland has been taken out of the ALR for residential development, roads, industrial development and where were all the opponents to these exclusions? Not to be seen.

Farmers having problems moving their equipment on the Old Dewdney Trunk Road? I wonder if some of these so called farmers even know how to turn their tractor emergency lights on when travelling on DTR Rd.?

I have lived in this neighbour hood for 30 plus years. The only products I see produced are: blueberries, cranberries and hay.

Having sold real estate in this neighbour hood for 25 years and still being kept up to date, what are most acreage investors buying in Pitt Meadows?

Large parcels of land either with blueberries fields or properties for blueberry production.

Most of these buyers are Asian, parking their money in Pitt Meadows and hoping to export blueberries to Asia. And some of these properties are offered for rent (absentee owners).

And we worry about feeding Canadians? There is still plenty of unused farmland laying around for food production.

Also, as the minister for the Agricultural Land Reserve stated, the ALR requirements should be brought up to date. Rock piles ( in the Swan-e-set area ) do not belong in the ALR.

Lance Felgnar

Pitt Meadows

 

ALR a total failure

Editor, The News:

Re: Farmland OK’d for new road, mall (The News, Aug. 16).

Adding land to the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) is not possible.  Land is in short supply as it is.

The ALR is a total failure and should be scrapped.  Anytime the demand for developable land is presented, land will be taken from the ALR to serve the need.  The ALR only slows the process of converting farmland to development property.  That is a political reality.

We do not really need more farmland.  The more land used for farmland makes the cost of housing go up as demand exceeds supply.  When land is taken out of the ALR, this lowers the cost of housing.  Putting shopping centres on farmland lowers the cost of rent and the price of goods and services.

Using B.C. farmland for farming is not productive.  I do not see a lot of food being produced on any ALR land.  Most of it is used for blueberries or landscaping trees. Some is for cows but more for horses.    It is much more efficient to grow food in the warmer areas of the world and with transportation and technology advances more food can be grown in smaller areas.

However, it is nice to have open space and farmland for a healthier environment.  The only way to preserve the farmland is to make it more costly to use it for development.  If land for development were more expensive, developers would use the land more efficiently.  Compare the land use for the Superstore in Coquitlam with parking underground to the Superstore in Pitt Meadows that has a large parking lot on former farmland.

If you had a system where any zoned farmland could only be developed if 50 per cent of the land were given to the parks board, then it would guarantee land preserved for park.  Excess parkland could be rented at low rates for locals to farmers.  Land might actually be used for local produce. Developers would be less anxious to buy land if they had to donate half of it for parkland/farmland.

Dan Banov

Mission

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