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Undercurrent Mailbox: March 2 Edition

The proposed Cape Roger Curtis park was the main thing on people's minds last week
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Cape Roger Curtis considerations...

Dear Editor,

I had a quick glance at the Metro Vancouver “Project Overview for Rezoning / OCP Amendment”.

In its introduction Metro Vancouver makes a seductive and compelling pledge that “the park would preserve a large area of ecologically important and sensitive dry coastal bluff ecosystem…” The included map “Land Use map of the proposed Regional Park at Cape Roger Curtis” clearly shows 10 pods scattered around the 97 hectares with restrictive covenants to protect environmentally sensitive areas.  

The large buffer zones required to truly protect and help those environmentally sensitive areas to survive and thrive are replaced with camp grounds. Those camp grounds will not “conserve the integrity and resilience of the ecosystems” of the pods affected.

The planned walk-in sites will be directly above and overlooking the mentioned “700 meters of ecologically diverse dry bluff waterfront”! While 25 (or so) car accessible tent sites will be squeezed between the environmentally sensitive pods located on lots E & D.

Presently on Bowen Island, in Crippen Regional park, dogs have a God given right to roam off-leash and Metro Parks does not enforce its regulation of maintaining dogs on leash. How then will Metro Vancouver actually enforce the protection of “the unique and valuable habitat” of Cape Roger Curtis while it cannot enforce its very own rules and regulations?

It is evident that Metro Vancouver cannot fulfill its pledge of protecting Cape Roger Curtis’ ecologically sensitive areas and thus Cape Roger Curtis should join the other two Metro Vancouver Regional Parks that are Ecological Conservancy Areas. 

Sincerely yours,

- Anne Franc de Ferrière-Chollat

Dear Mayor and Council,

We are writing to express our support for the creation of a Metro park at Cape Roger Curtis. We do have questions and concerns – primarily about the scale of the proposed campground – but overall, we are very much in favour of preserving a large swath of beautiful coast and forest as parkland on Bowen Island for the enjoyment of all.

We strongly support the creation of public spaces, and believe that providing such spaces with access to nature improves our collective well being and makes for a better society.

We are well aware of the outcry on Bowen Island from some who are concerned about the park proposal, particularly with respect to the proposed plans for a campground. Within this discourse, there is a lot of misinformation flying around and so far, we have not yet seen a willingness to thoughtfully engage in a discussion that considers both sides of the debate.

It seems the “no” side has been very vocal (largely on Facebook), and that may drown out the other voices. We are aware of many people who support the park who are reticent to wade into the (sometimes nasty) public debate. This should not lead Council to conclude that there is no support for the park among Bowen Islanders. We have filled out the Metro feedback form and hope others who support the park are also taking the time to do so.

Our hope is that we can get past the initial knee-jerk reaction and have a true discussion that leads us to a win/win conclusion - one that creates a new park at CRC while also addressing the valid concerns about camping, transportation, and potential overcrowding on our small island.

Hopefully Council will not consider only the loudest voices who are crying foul, but will also find ways to hear from others in the community who represent different points of view.  


- Jennifer Hall & Peter Robinson

Dear Editor,

With reference to the letter by Susan Redmond and Doug Fleetham (Undercurrent, Feb. 16, 2023), we couldn’t agree more with their concerns about the probability of camping sites ruining the already relative peace of our island. 

We live near Snug Cove and have noticed a huge increase in traffic, ferry overloads, and difficulty parking in the town square in the last four or five years. All the reasons mentioned by the above writers about why we chose Bowen as our full time residence 20 years ago, are totally valid.

They should be taken into account when deciding whose priorities are more important: the local population, or the few businesses profiting from extra tourists with all the concomitant dangers to our environment and what we consider our right to maintain a level of calmness in our streets and clean air with limited traffic in our surroundings.

- Loredana May-Brind, Bill Brind