Marine Trail Holdings cabin development in rural Juan de Fuca is dead in the water, but the game isn’t quite over.
After the Sept. 14 vote to deny rezoning 236 hectares, JDF electoral area director Mike Hicks put forward a motion to petition the province to purchase the lands from owner Ender Ilkay.
“I made the motion coming from comments (at the public hearings). It was very clear that the people in the Juan de Fuca (want the province) to purchase the land from Mr. Ilkay,” Hicks said.
The development application would have seen 257 cabins, one resort lodge, two recreation buildings, six caretaker residences and a public park constructed adjacent to the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail.
Three days of public hearings in Sooke showed almost unanimous public opposition to the proposal.
“There was very little support for a resort development of any size,” Hicks said.
He said that there were only three options for the lands in question: rezoning, logging or purchasing.
“Now we’re down to log it or buy it. I’ve given it a lot of thought and not everyone is grasping the reality,” he said.
Hicks said Ilkay can sell the property in seven separate parcels and each owner can log or extract resources from the land without the CRD having any power to stop operations.
“We have to accept that,” said Hicks. “I feel content, in my heart I did the right thing for the Juan de Fuca constituents, now the onus is on the province. It is (close to) a provincial park and I hope they step up, it’s important to protect that land and move on.”
He supports the CRD using some of its parks allocation funds to help the provincial government purchase these lands.