Gloucester neighbourhood residents hope to put the brakes on truck park proposal

Concern over nearby wetlands, proposed tree removals among issues raised by speakers during June 27 public hearing

A proposal for a truck park inthe Gloucester neighbourhood of north Aldergrove has some area residents concerned about the potential for damage to a nearby wetland

A new truck park proposed next to a wetland in Gloucester has neighbours worried about potential environmental damage.

During a public hearing at Langley Township council on June 27, three residents spoke in opposition to the proposal, claiming the lot will have negative effects on not only the wetland, but also on the salmon-bearing West Creek, which runs through the property.

The proposed site is on 5.5 acres in the 27200 block of 48 Avenue. A development permit has been submitted by Beedie Development Group, on behalf of a numbered company, 161884 Canada Inc., for a truck park accommodating 122 trucks, and an accessory office building, which will be occupied by family-owned trucking company, Pacific Coast Distribution Ltd.

The eastern portion of the lot has a treed environmental area that is protected from disturbance by a covenant. There are 29 significant trees identified on the property outside of the covenanted area, and all are proposed to be removed.

The applicant still needs to finalize a stormwater management plan, and an erosion and sediment control plan, which was a point of contention for the three speakers.

“My big question, is this going to turn into a South Surrey truck park? Not so many trucks, same effect,” said Walnut Grove resident Jim Armstrong, who is a professional biologist, a director of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Salmon  Enhancement and Habitat Advisory Board, and a director of the Fraser Valley Watershed coalition.

Armstrong says he was asked to examine the property on behalf of those concerned about West Creek and, after walking through the area, has a number of environmental concerns.

Among them is having the trucks parked on a paved surface, where contaminated discharge will run off and “directly affect” the water quality in the creek.

He also said removing the trees will destroy a “significant wildlife corridor” and create a heatsink, and that the guidelines being used to determine setbacks for development near a fish bearing stream are out of date.

Titled ‘Guidelines for Land Development and Protection of the Aquatic Environment,’ the technical report was developed by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada in July, 1978. Armstrong believes the most recent guidelines are from 2012.

When asked by Coun. Kim Richter if there are ways to mitigate these environmental effects, Armstrong said there are.

“It’s just a matter of how you develop your site — whether you move the trucks away, whether you have interceptors to stop any runoff from the trucks,” he said.

“When you say a ‘truck park,’ they wash trucks here, too. They dump their garbage.

“There’s other examples of it, and you go into most truck parks and that’s what you see. You can have development with the environment. Development does work with the environment; it’s how it’s done.”

In light of those comments, Richter asked that staff review the proposal with the proponent and address the speakers’ environmental concerns. Her motion carried, with Mayor Jack Froese opposed.

The proponent was given an opportunity to speak at the public hearing, but no comments were made.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Wind warning has ended for Metro Vancouver

More than 34,000 BC Hydro customers in the dark on Sunday morning in the Lower Mainland and Sunshine Coast

Langley junior curling champs defend title in Quebec

Defeat of their cousin’s team has secured Tardi brothers and the rest of the team in today’s finals.

Langley Clothes by the Pound closes

Thrift store that tried to introduce a new approach to bargain hunting may have gone out of business

WIND WARNING: Metro Vancouver expecting 100 km/h gusts Saturday night

Environment Canada issues warns of possibly dangerous conditions

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

VIDEO: Dramatic video shows return of rescued B.C. snowboarders

Two snowboarders were rescued near Rossland, B.C. on Sunday after being lost overnight.

Tom Brady leads Patriots back to Super Bowl, top Jaguars 24-20

New England to face winner of Sunday night’s game between Minnesota and Philadelphia on Feb. 4

Coquihalla drivers prepare for snow

Wintry conditions persist, with snow warnings for Coquihalla

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Final phase of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy trials to kick off in B.C.

Doctors hope to get psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy legalized in Canada and the U.S. by 2021

VIDEO: Vancouver Giants blanked by Portland Winterhawks

Saturday’s 2-0 setback marks first regulation loss for G-Men in 10 games

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

Most Read