Not appropriate development

Dear Editor:

It falls to me to point out that any lack of objection to the proposed development at 451 Churchill Ave. does not stem from any community support for the project.

The community had previously made exhaustive efforts to object to such developments of four-plexes on small family lots at 433, 707 and 717 Churchill Ave.

These extensive efforts produced not an iota of change to either plan under two different councils.

We now recognize this sham of democracy for what it is and the futility of constructive comment. Our position as community members will be ignored and even more irritating, the development will be passed under the auspices of  “The Community Plan.”

We are faced with a council which rolls over with the obsequiousness of a Labrador dog in the face of any developer bearing permit monies and the potential to increase the tax base (preferably fourfold). All other aspects of planning will fade into the sunset.

We are not naive enough to deny the need for replacement of some of the housing stock and the virtue of densification, but to allow the beautiful garden suburb that was Churchill Avenue, Alexander and Lakeshore Drive turn into sardine suburbia is not appropriate development.

There is no consideration for natural beauty, privacy, neighbourliness, green spaces, parking provision, architectural merit or diversity, or the value of lilac hedges and roses to a strolling evening tourist trade.

Cash is kind, the holy grail of development is maximum lot coverage and the cheapest design that can possibly be pimped as high-end!

We residents are left with increased taxes as lot prices inflate and become unaffordable for young families and the constant irritant that we are paying the wages of the decision makers.

We realize of course that this charade of democracy and planning is being played out throughout our good city as well evidenced in the Skaha Park debacle.

Penticton – a place to stay forever?

Paddy Smith

Penticton