This rendering shows the proposed warehouse for lands under the authority of the Victoria Airport Authority near a Sidney residential neighbourhood. (York Reality/Submitted).

This rendering shows the proposed warehouse for lands under the authority of the Victoria Airport Authority near a Sidney residential neighbourhood. (York Reality/Submitted).

Community leader calls for broader engagement in Sidney around warehouse proposal

More consultation alone not enough to address residents’ concerns: Steve Duck

The president of the Sidney Community Association wants public engagement in line with past projects when it comes to a proposal for a large warehouse on land controlled by the Victoria Airport Authority (VAA).

Public forums permitting residents to comment on the abandoned Gateway Project and previously proposed redevelopment of the Cedarwood Inn and Suites property are necessary, but insufficient steps to engage residents and other interested parties, Steve Duck said.

“If nothing else, it would give residents a sense of being heard,” he said. “If you go back and look at the previous ones mentioned, Gateway and Cedarwood, in one case, residents came out in masses and didn’t change the town’s decision on what to do; in the case of Cedarwood, they did. But in both cases, there was value to being heard.”

RELATED: Sidney asked to show patience about identity of would-be warehouse operator

York Realty plans to build the nearly 23-metre tall structure next to a residential neighbourhood along Galaran Road, leasing it to an as-yet undisclosed “last-mile distribution company.” Both VAA – which has final authority over the project – and York Realty are reviewing a series of non-binding recommendations from the Town of Sidney.

Broadly summarized, the recommendations call on VAA to make approval of York Realty’s plan contingent on certain conditions, including engagement with Galaran Road residents and improvements to the appearance of the building including revisions to the eastern facade “to reduce its impact” on neighbourhood.

Duck said it is obvious Galaran Road residents are concerned about the height, massing and traffic.

RELATED: Sidney calls on Victoria Airport Authority to improve design of planned warehouse

RELATED: Neighbours stunned by massive warehouse proposed near Victoria airport

“As the community ponders the proposed distribution centre, how do we find a balance where everyone wins?” he asked.

Finding answers to these questions starts but does not end with genuine public engagement, he said. Most residents in the area learned about the project well after VAA informed Tsyecum First Nation but not other First Nations in the area, prompting outrage from the public and WSANEC Leadership Council Society.

“They dropped the ball,” said Duck. “They should have started that process back here with that engagement and now they let the cat out of bag.”

RELATED: Chamber of Commerce promises Sidney warehouse proposal will deliver jobs

RELATED: 23-metre tall warehouse pitched for airport lot next to Sidney neighbourhood

What follows next is about mending fences and finding solutions, said Duck. “It’s about addressing that process and finding the best solution for everybody concerned,” he said.

Both VAA and York Realty have publicly acknowledged failures in communication and promised improvement moving forward.

Rod Hunchak, VAA’s director of business development and community relations, said VAA continues to review all comments and recommendations received from the municipality through the referral process. “(We) will be updating our website with project information and monitor comments on our dedicated email,” he said. We’re developing our next-step community communications strategy with emphasis on communicating with the residents of the West Sidney neighbourhood one on one.”

The public can find the project page at and submit comments to

Do you have a story tip? Email:

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

SidneyVictoria International Airport

Just Posted

Willows Beach in Oak Bay. (Black Press Media file photo)
Seven days of sun set to shine on Greater Victoria

Special weather statement warns of higher than usual temperatures

Chef Trevor Randle leads a June 21 online cooking featuring recipes – beef zesty lettuce wraps, blueberry strudel and blueberry spritzer. (Courtesy We Heart Local BC)
Free online cooking course explores B.C. blueberries and beef

Chef Trevor Randle calls them the province’s most flavourful foods

Google Maps shows significant traffic backups after a crash reported shortly before noon on Father’s Day, June 20. (Google Maps)
Father’s Day crash in Saanich closes lane of McKenzie Avenue

Police say there were injuries, traffic impacted

Victoria Regional Transit System routes 7 UVic/Downtown, 21 Interurban/Downtown and 53 Colwood/Langford will undergo changes as of June 28. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria school routes scaled down for summer by BC Transit

Service changes take effect June 28, enhanced service returns this fall and winter

Andrea Lewis (left), board member of the Shoreline Medical Society, receives a $3,000 cheque from Andrew Hansen, owner of Boondocks Bar and Grill. They are joined by Elizabeth Rhoades, executive director Shawna Walker, as well as board members Richard Flader and Andrew Tidman. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Sidney bar owner helps doctor recruitment for Saanich Peninsula clinics

Boondocks Bar and Grill raised $3,000 in May for Shoreline Medical Society

Jesse Roper tackles weeds in his garden to kick off the 2021 season of What’s In My Garden Man? (YouTube/Whats In My Garden)
VIDEO: Metchosin singer-songwriter Jesse Roper invites gardeners into his plot

What’s In My Garden, Man? kicks off with the poop on compost

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased on Vancouver Island

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Canadians who got AstraZeneca shot can now see ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Most Read