The solid blue line signifies where the proposed new border between Langford and Metchosin would be redrawn. In exchange

Three-way land proposal could see Metchosin-Langford boundary change

Nearly 400 acres earmarked for business park development in deal that includes Beecher Bay First Nation

Hundreds of acres are on the table to potentially change hands in what local municipal and First Nations politicians are calling a historic land deal.

Beecher Bay Chief Russ Chipps, along with Langford Mayor Stew Young and Metchosin Mayor John Ranns, announced Monday that a proposed land agreement would see the Beecher Bay First Nation exchange Treaty lands for a share of development land in Langford.

“I don’t think it’s ever been done before; it’s pretty extraordinary,” Ranns said. “This is the biggest thing we’ve ever done in Metchosin.”

Ultimately, 250 acres of Treaty lands within Metchosin would be preserved as green space in perpetuity and in return, Metchosin will shrink its northern boundary with Langford by 380 acres to allow for the creation of a new business park development.

This exchange will require a municipal boundary change and still requires public consultation and various levels of government approvals.

“This is just the very beginning of the public process,” Ranns said, adding that a mailout explaining the proposal is expected to arrive at Metchosin homes this week. “I just hope the rest of the community realizes this is essential to our vision.”

The business park is touted to create as many as 4,000 permanent jobs and the Beecher Bay First Nation would own a third of the site. They would also enter into a tax sharing agreement relating to the business park development with Langford and Metchosin.

“This partnership promises to bring prosperity to the Beecher Bay people while also protecting valuable green space for generations,” Chipps said in a release. “This is another step on our journey toward economic independence.”

Young also noted in the release that the proposed business park will be an expanded version of one already being considered by the City of Langford.

“This is a historic agreement between municipalities and a First Nation, creating family supporting jobs for our region,” he said. “Having high-paying jobs in the community where you live is important to everyone in Langford, Metchosin and Beecher Bay.”

As for the land that could potentially be part of Langford one day, Ranns said, “this is strictly vacant land in a very remote corner … Most people don’t even realize it’s Metchosin.”

While there is substantial benefit to the three partners, he said, there is also significant benefit to the greater region as a whole. Ranns noted that it also shows a rural municipality can do its part to contribute to the overall economic health of the region.

“This has haunted me for years on how we would achieve this,” he said. “How do we save Metchosin and get the Band the economic development they need? This is the best I could come up with to solve that and I hope the residents see that.”

katie@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Bear sightings historically rare in Langford: City staff

51 bear complaints or sightings in last year

Mental health walk/run aims to outpace depression

Walk increased to 5k, run to 10k

Island cycling series boosts youth race schedule

New series creates opportunity for more youth competition

Colwood wins award for Sustainable Infrastructure Replacement Plan

Plan wins Award of Excellence in Government Finance

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, multiple people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. RCMP receive application for Police Cat Services

RCMP announced the launch of the Police Cat Services unit as an April fools joke

Kirkland Signature veggie burgers recalled due to possible metal fragments

Recalled products came in 1.7 kg packages with a best before date of Apr. 23, 2019

Parents of 13 who tortured children get life after hearing victims

One of their daughters fled their home and pleaded for help to a 911 operator

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Most Read