Murrayville resident D. Harkin is asking the Township to reject an application to exclude a parcel of land along 48 Avenue from the Agricultural Land Reserve, saying, “It is an integral part of Murrayville and deserves protection from development.”

Letter: Reject Murrayville ALR exclusion application, Township urged

Editor: A sign indicating an exclusion application has been erected on a large parcel of land on the south side of 48 Avenue, between 215A Street and 213 Street.

The application seeks to exclude the land from the ALR.

The land itself is part of the wonderful green space that separates Langley City from the Township and is habitat to a wide range of animals, from the lowly field mouse to the graceful deer and the environmentally useful bat.

It also serves as habitat for a wide range of birds, including eagles, hawks, pheasants and owls.

In addition to all of the above, the land has a protected and active fish-bearing stream.

During meetings held with the residents of Macklin Corners, planners representing the owners of the property stated that the owners intend to develop a portion of the land for residential housing.

They also stated that an alternative development within ALR guidelines could see the arrival of either greenhouses or an intensive chicken facility, filling the entire property, complete with associated aromas.

Any movement in either direction would certainly devalue the “historic Murrayville” rural setting.

This is not just an ordinary tract of land. It is an integral part of Murrayville and deserves protection from development.

There are very few tracts of land left in Murrayville which provide for such a rich green space.

The gradual slope of the tree line, at approximately 45 Avenue, gives a wonderful vista from 48 Avenue.

It is very likely that many of the residents of Murrayville and the Township at large are unaware of this exclusion application.

The placement and size of the notice sign leaves a lot to be desired.

The sign appears to be at least half the size of the usual signs used to advise citizens of zoning and other development applications proposals and it is located  in the field where it cannot be readily seen (let alone read) by those driving along 48 Avenue.

I urge the Township to reject this application for exclusion.

D. Harkin,