Monday, January 8, 2024

Maple Ridge Seeks Regional Approval for Yennadon Industrial Lands

In 2003, the Agricultural Land Commission allowed the removal of 18 hectares of land from the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) in the Yennadon area of Maple Ridge, shown roughly on the following map.

The area of property Yennadon Industrial Lands is highlighted in red. Select the map to enlarge.

The Commission at the time noted that this removal of land would impact the remaining land within the ALR south of 128th Street and west of 232nd Street. The Commission would automatically remove the remaining lands from the ALR at the property owners' request. Owners requested land removed in 2004, 2018, and 2023.

Metro Vancouver's Regional Growth Strategy designated most of the land in the area as general urban (which permits any use) except for 2 hectares, regionally designated as agricultural land. The regional agricultural land-use designation tracks with the provincial ALR, so with this land now removed, it would need to be redesignated as a different land use.

Map of current regional land use designations. Select the map to enlarge.

Maple Ridge is now applying to the Metro Vancouver Regional District Board to redesign 18 hectares with the regional designation of Industrial and 7.4 hectares as Conservation and Recreation. Industrial land is in short supply. This proposed land use change would increase regionally protected industrial land, not by removing rural lands. It would also increase regionally protected "green space" by 5.4 hectares.

Map of proposed regional land use designations. Select the map to enlarge.

Metro Vancouver staff did note that Maple Ridge could further protect this proposed green space by adding conservation covenants or parkland dedication to the 7.4 hectares.

These lands are currently served by two bus routes, which provide service every 30 minutes or so. We see a strong demand for transit services throughout the region to industrial areas, so I expect no difference from this proposal.

In Metro Vancouver, too often, we take rural land and convert it to industrial uses. So, I am happy to see a proposal that takes land already serviced by transit and 92% already within the Urban Growth boundary and designates it for industrial use while increasing green space.

The Metro Vancouver Regional Planning Committee will review this proposal, and the Metro Vancouver Regional District Board must approve it.

Currently, these lands are not connected to the Metro Vancouver sewer system, so Maple Ridge must make a separate request to extend sewer services.

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