Preserving Important Environmental and
Agricultural Values in North Saanich
North Saanich is considered one of the best rural residential communities in Canada for a reason. Our 40 kilometers of marine coastline surround fertile agricultural lands, forests and large lot neighbourhoods. Residents have appreciated and enshrined the rural, marine and agricultural values so prevalent in North Saanich in our Official Community Plans for decades, and its uniqueness can be attributed to the long-term vision of so many who advocated for preservation of these qualities.
The Capital Regional District’s (CRD) Regional Growth Strategy (RGS) has further protected those values through designating North Saanich as a rural rural-residential municipality. Among the RGS’s primary objectives is keeping urban settlement compact and protecting the integrity of rural communities. The overarching intention of the RGS is to reduce development pressures on the Saanich Peninsula and other rural areas “to ensure that they remain strongly rooted in the agricultural…land base . . . allowing the rural countryside and natural landscape to remain as a durable fact of life in the Capital Region”.
But our environmental and agricultural values are constantly under pressure from development, and development interests have had an oversized influence on our current Official Community Plan Review.
North Saanich Community Voices, a group of concerned residents originally established in 2014 to advocate for the preservation of these important rural values, is once again stepping up to provide an important long-term perspective that is in danger of being pushed aside by short-sighted development interests.
In support of the conversations we need to be having as a community as the OCP Review continues, we offer this site as a sort of clearing house for those perspectives which are more closely aligned with the unique rural identity so many North Saanich residents have come to appreciate about North Saanich.
We are including a small selection of articles in the Blog Archive from the 2014-15 era and 2021 that pertain to issues that are still timely.
Please take some time to read these perspectives and talk about them with your friends and neighbours, sign up for email updates, and help us shape an OCP that truly reflects the values of this community.
We can't do this without you.