The laws protecting B.C.’s agricultural land have been controversial ever since they were enacted in the 1970s. Recently, the Agricultural Land Commission rejected a proposal by the District of Maple Ridge, a part of Metro Vancouver, to open more than 250 acres of the Agricultural Land Reserve for development, but the ALC has left the door open for a less ambitious plan. The ALC’s position, communicated by letter, was announced at the final Maple Ridge District Council meeting of the year on December 5.
The proposed construction of big box retail on the Albion Flats has been controversial in Maple Ridge. The “pro-shopping” side was the clear winner in the November 19 municipal election; all of the Council candidates elected had been endorsed by interest groups that supported retail development on the Flats. For the Fraseropolis region, it’s another example of a continuing suburban sentiment in favour of the hopscotch-style, automobile-dependent development that has dominated Port Coquitlam, Abbotsford and other municipalities in recent years. Continue reading