The Oceanfront forum season is off to a good start, with more than a hundred interested citizens attending the District-sponsored event at the Brew Pub on Tuesday (Sept. 26). The Garibaldi Room was full to capacity, with interested spectators overflowing into the hallways.
It's good for democracy, though maybe a little sore on the legs.
While it wasn't a raucous event, and no bad behaviour occurred (though can't speak for the goings on in the hallway), there were certainly a lot of strong opinions expressed. A referendum was mentioned by a participant who didn't like the way the Oceanfront project was progressing, which may have seemed like bad behaviour to some, but voices remained steady.
The event ended with spontaneous and sustained applause - perhaps because the whole transformation of the Nexen lands, and by extension Squamish, was at last being discussed openly and in public.Over the coming weeks there are two more forum events, and both will undoubtedly give many other voices the chance to join the chorus.
Brennan Park will host the Squamish Chamber of Commerce's event at 6 p.m. on Monday (Oct. 2), with our very own Tim Shoults acting as moderator. The District and SODC will hold its second and final forum the following Tuesday (Oct. 10), at 6 p.m. at the Sea to Sky hotel.
We encourage your attendance at either or both events; a town of 16,000 can drum up more than a little over a hundred people. This $500-million project is at the vanguard of a development movement taking Squamish to new and uncharted territory. It is not something we will come back from, however much the old town remains in our memories.
So, before the town almost doubles in size, residents should take advantage of their standing as current citizens of Squamish to make their concerns and/or compliments known.