Re: "DND lands hold great potential," Nov. 3.
The Department of National Defence lands in the Western Communities with their towering trees and natural coastlines, if protected, can be a nature legacy to be enjoyed and appreciated by future generations. Or they can be sold for development, contributing to urban sprawl, traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions.
In 2006, an ecological inventory of the DND lands was completed by the Victoria Natural History Society's Green Spaces Project. The resulting catalogue of natural values found the lands supported many rare and endangered species and contained some of the last remnants of Canada's old growth coastal Douglas fir.
With the ocean view of much of the DND lands, how likely is it that once the forests are cleared, the land will be used for low-cost housing? It is far more likely that development will be luxury housing. Do we really need another Oak Bay in the Western Communities?
The proximate principle of open space states that property near open spaces sells for higher prices, hence pays higher taxes to support local communities.
The DND lands are an opportunity for a greener future. Let's not waste it on for short-term gain that will result in long-term pain.
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