Mission opposition builds to ‘white elephant’ business park proposal

The goal to have more jobs and services for Mission residents will be tested with a business park proposal set for a public hearing on Monday (Nov. 21).

Local residents are mounting opposition as Cedar Coast and OTG Developments are asking for their property at 33447 Dewdney Trunk Rd. to be rezoned to allow for four “industrial” buildings. The 18-acre Dewdney Trunk Road property, at Cade Barr Street, is grassland in a quiet part of north Mission.

But it is located in Cedar Valley, which the city has earmarked as being suitable for the Future Employment Lands designation.

“The Future Employment Lands designation in this area has long been envisioned as a strategic opportunity to allow for local employment opportunities in Cedar Valley,” reads a city report on the Cade Barr Business Park proposal.

The issue was a hot topic at the Mission all-candidates’ meeting in October in which several candidates, including sitting councillors express a desire to add more services – especially retail – in northern Mission for residents.

The park’s buildings will be “designed to accommodate many small businesses as well as a few larger businesses,” reads a statement by Cedar Coast. “The uses which will go on the site will primarily be light industrial in nature. This includes uses such as office, warehouse, light manufacturing, veterinarian, retail.”

The developers say the park will result in more than 400 “living wage” jobs.

“As part of this project, the developer is donating two acres of land, valued at over two million dollars, to be used for a new fire hall which will serve the surrounding community,” says a Cedar Coast statement.

Several residents have been posting statements on the Mission Neighbours Facebook page asking for people to attend the public hearing and send in letters of opposition.

“The proposed rezoning will affect your streets and neighbourhood,” reads one post. “More truck traffic associated with warehouses on streets that already are unable to support the current traffic. Not to mention school zones and parks that will have extra truck traffic.”

“As this rezoning application includes industrial warehouses, we feel this is the wrong location as it is not suited for the existing and future residential neighbourhood,” reads a letter being sent to the city. “Warehouses belong along the main traffic corridors.”

Another resident said the park will be a “white elephant” in such a rural neighbourhood.

“They will look like a giant white elephant,” said one resident, who didn’t want their name used. “They will have the ability to run 24/7. They will also increase the traffic on the main traffic corridors and in residential areas. The traffic is a major concern for a lot of people. People feel warehouses should be kept along Lougheed highway or downtown areas already set up for them where they’ll have access to railway, close to border and possible port.”

Instead, residents suggest the land instead be developed with, for example, a grocery store.


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