Upon hearing the federal government’s approval for the Woodfibre LNG environmental assessment, I can’t help but think… who’s really running Squamish? The people, or the council and many foreign investors who are buying up our land for dubious development? I find it disturbing. The fast changes show a lack of realization and appreciation for what Squamish already is.
Consider Nexen: Council and developers want to change it massively by building shopping, cafés, towers, boardwalks, museums, etc. Now, I am neither against museums nor development, but is that scale of development necessary in that location? Do they not realize this “waterfront development” takes away from the very thing we love about Nexen? Imagine walking around there and having your view blinded by lights and overdevelopment of overpriced, so-called “green” buildings mimicking that of Whistler. Now, imagine looking out on Howe Sound and seeing a large, polluting LNG factory and its giant tankers on the horizon.
Is this the Squamish we love? What I want to see at Nexen is already there: trees, ocean, rock, beauty, open space. Walking on its narrow path bordered by trees is calming; absorbing lights from the stars and moon, humbling. When first walking down the streets of Squamish 15 years ago, I enjoyed the logger town feel. The locals stared at me, the outsider. It was slower, more cultured, affordable…
Now it is I who stares at the newcomers and witnesses locals leaving because of overpriced housing despite overdevelopment, witnesses boats and pilings disappear from the Mamquam Blind Channel simply because council wants them cleaned up. Derelict boats attract undesirable people? Same goes for van dwellers and the like. No camping and no parking signs are appearing everywhere. How is council affording this “cleanup”?
After all, the current council was voted into office because they were opposed to LNG and yet, council is making it easier and easier for LNG to make its way here.
While change is inevitable, wouldn’t it be better if the changes were towards evolving and bettering our planet? So, when is enough, enough? There has to come a time when we put our foot down. Let’s truly appreciate Squamish for what it already is. Love what you have and work to protect it. It’s our responsibility.