Our view: Langley density requirements scaled back

Higher density is coming to South Langley.

People are going to be upset about the new Brookswood-Fernridge community plan.

That is true of every plan that will change a Langley neighbourhood. People in this area are passionate about their communities, whether Fort Langley, Aldergrove, Willoughby, or tree-shaded Brookswood.

The question that council now has to answer is, have they made enough compromise between what the existing residents want, what landowners want, and what the community needs to grow?

We’ll likely find out at the upcoming public hearings at the end of June.

What we can say is that this process was much better than the process that led to the first, failed plan that was deep sixed by council in 2014.

That plan was partially funded by landowners hoping to develop, which in the eyes of many tainted it from the start. The OCP infuriated many residents who felt they were being railroaded into accepting a plan that would almost quadruple the population of the suburban and rural neighbourhood.

The new plan does contain more density, but scaled back. If approved, the new Fernridge will resemble Brookswood or Walnut Grove more than Willoughby.

If this plan is still not good enough, then Brookswood is in trouble.

Developers have already begun building according to old guidelines, and Fernridge could be swamped with housing in short order, but without any of the benefits of a new plan.

Whether this plan or another, time is increasingly of the essence for Fernridge.

– M.C.

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