Keep farmland for farming, says Delta

The City of Delta wants an assurance from the port that agricultural land won’t be taken for industrial purposes.

A civic report endorsed by council notes the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is currently updating its five-year land use plan and invited the city’s participation in the latest phase of the update, adding the new draft plan has a renewed focus on the protection and intensification of trade-enabling industrial lands.

It includes the potential “acquisition of sites to protect their availability for future port use, giving priority to lands that demonstrate ready access to shipping and/or transportation networks and close proximity to existing port authority holdings.”

The Delta report notes the city supports the protection of industrial lands and has taken steps itself to promote and incentivize the redevelopment of brownfield sites through the “Saving Our Industrial Lands” strategy and revitalization tax exemption programs.

In addition, council has supported several significant industrial developments including the Beedie Parkwood development and Delta Link Business Park.

“However, Delta has been very clear that its agricultural land base must be protected and not converted to industrial use to service the port or port-related activities. It is recommended that Delta reiterate its request that VFPA commit to protecting agricultural land and not acquire farmland for industrial uses,” the report notes.

Delta is also requesting the port authority enhance its communications and processes on proposed land use changes to provide more opportunities to have meaningful input through the consultation process.

© Delta Optimist