So, the rumours are true. After next season Squamish’s WhistlePunk Hollow Adventure RV Park will close for good.
For months rumours have swirled around Squamish, like the snowflakes this past weekend, that the campground on Centennial Way had been sold. Late last week its owners finally confirmed it.
“It is with mixed emotions that we are announcing that 2017 will be the final season of WhistlePunk Hollow RV and Golf,” Jeff Kirkman told The Squamish Chief in an email. “With the rapid growth of Squamish and the encroachment of neighbouring developments, we feel that this area is no longer compatible with the vision and direction we have for the campground.”
Kirkman publicly opposed the plan to develop the land directly south of his into a 70-unit townhouse project by the Arlington Group, saying, at the time, it would hurt his tourism business.
The three-bedroom townhouse project received a nod from council in the form of a rezoning and official community plan amendment about a year ago.
Development company Anthem Properties is proposing to rezone the campground site to build a mix of retail, offices, rental apartments and townhouses.
Representatives from Anthem appeared before a recent community development standing committee to present the proposal.
“The proposal Anthem Properties has put forward is a great step towards fulfilling the wants and needs of Squamish while highlighting the beauty of the property,” Kirkman said. “We are confident they are a great fit for Squamish.”
Jeff and Janice Kirkman have operated the campground for 12 years.
The Anthem proposal has yet to go before council to request the necessary rezoning and Official Community Plan amendments.
“We need more campgrounds,” said Mayor Patricia Heintzman. “Anytime you are taking something out of a particular use like campground or greenway in the OCP for something else there’s got to be a pretty darn good reason to do it so obviously that goes into the evaluation processes as you look at this type of development.”