Editor, The News:
Dear Mayor Daykin and Maple Ridge council:
We are so upset that you would even consider to place a gravel pit in our quiet and peaceful residential neighbourhood.
We purchased our home 11 years ago. We pay our share of taxes and we deserve and demand respect in continuing to live peacefully in our home.
The last thing we ever expected was to have a gravel quarry dropped into our immediate residential area.
This is totally unacceptable and an inappropriate location to place a large working rock pit.
We, as residents, use 124th Avenue daily as the only exit and entrance to our homes.
We are in no way willing to accept the proposal to share our neighbourhood with a rock quarry or share the residential side street with gravel trucks and heavy equipment ripping through our neighbourhood, stirring up dust, dropping rocks, tracking mud and causing noise and air pollution.
We would be putting our lives and our children’s lives at risk each and every time we turned on and off of 124th Ave. in the direct path of gravel trucks.
Do you know children of this area walk that route to get to and from school? There is no alternative road for the kids to walk or for most of the residents to drive. As mentioned, this is our only means of escape.
We, as residents, do not want or deserve the sound of breaking ground and stone.
We don’t want the high-risk truck crossing.
We don’t want to hear the rumble of large heavy trucks.
We don’t want the weight of the trucks on our residential streets.
We don’t want to hear the air brakes and heavy equipment running in the back ground, nor the dust on our streets, property and vehicles.
And we sure don’t want the diesel fumes and rock quarry dust in our lungs.
This operation would have great impact on declining house values. Who wants to buy a house in the proximity of a gravel pit and heavy industrial traffic?
People work hard in life to have a beautiful home to call their own. They chose the area where they are going to live with great consideration to their surroundings.
Mr. Daykin and council members, this is our home, a home we have been proud of.
Pride of ownership shows. Please take the time to drive up our streets, meet the friendly residents and the see the children playing.
We live in a community and we deserve to live in peace, without noise pollution and certainly without additional and avoidable health risks to our family.
This property isn’t zoned for industrial use and it should remain as designated.
If this proposal is not dismissed, my husband and I will be forced to sell our home and relocate outside of Maple Ridge.
We have been happy to call Maple Ridge our home for about 24 years now and we believe it to be one of the most beautiful places in the Lower Mainland –a community located near lakes, amazing parks and tucked ever so perfectly between the mighty Fraser River and the breathtaking Golden Ears mountains.
We say no to this proposal and we ask you to please do the same.
Editor, The News:
We are writing to express our concerns about a proposed gravel extraction site in my neighbourhood on 124th Avenue.
We purchased our home 11 years ago and researched the future plans for the area. We accepted that 124th Ave. may widen and be extended to the east. This was the only plan for changes to our neighbourhood in the Official Community Plan.
We have learned that despite having an OCP, the safe, family-oriented, semi-rural feel of our neighbourhood could change drastically in a very short time if the proposed gravel pit is allowed by council.
The proposed changes make 124th Ave. the main access road in and out of the proposed gravel site.
OCPs are designed to protect many aspects of a community. Our concern is that what is currently protected can change based on one individual’s need for economic gain and ignore the serious impact on others.
Furthermore, it seems this change goes against the guiding principles, values and visions in the OCP for the District of Maple Ridge. Why is council even considering this development application?
The data available about our OCP on the District of Maple Ridge website lists the corporate mission statement as having the goal of promoting a safe and liveable community for our present and future citizens.
Furthermore, the OCP mission statement reads: “The district will strive to protect its community values into the future, as it becomes more vibrant and prosperous, offering residents a strong local economy, stable and special neighbourhoods, thoughtful development, a diversity of agriculture, and respect for the built and natural environment.”
Council appears to have a clear goal of protecting citizens and their neighbourhoods, but it seems, in the circumstance of the proposed gravel pit, this is not the case.
By considering this development proposal, is council acknowledging the decline in the safety and liveability of our neighbourhood if a gravel pit was permitted? There are numerous proven health risks, declines in property values, declines in quality of life, negative impacts on household and neighbourhood aesthetics, as well as negative impacts on local ecosystems and roadways that could result from the development of a gravel pit and the accompanying truck traffic. Is this what council had in mind when the OCP was created?
Has council’s vision and values changed, for profit at our neighbourhood’s expense?
The values expressed in the OCP are being ignored by giving the proposed gravel pit consideration. This development would detract from the stability and uniqueness of our neighbourhood.
Also, is it thoughtful to allow gravel trucks to travel on a road built for residential traffic that currently resembles a lane and is used by families with young children for recreational purposes like walking and cycling?
Lastly, the mere thought of allowing the gravel pit does not show respect for the current built and natural environment in our neighbourhood. Values are expected to remain the same, but it seems the guiding principles, values and visions with which council began the OCP are not being considered in this situation.
As a resident of the one of the neighbourhoods bordering this proposed development, I strongly urge other concerned residents and members of council to remember the goals in the OCP and ask that they fight to keep the integrity of our neighbourhood and the OCP.
and Jeff Scott