Friday, December 21, 2007
LFP's Take On Fort Langley's New Seniors Threshold of 45 Year Olds! Only in Langley Township You Say!
What Ever Happened to the Initial Bedford Landing design Concept?
This Editor remembers the initial and even then very controversial design concept of the Fort Langley Bedford Landing community design that would enhance Fort Langley on the old Interfor lands. It was just a few years ago that I got the impression that the overall design called for a mini village of mixed use that I remember would provide crafts and artists to live above their retail/design units along with a new quaint boutique hotel and patioed bar/grill with a broad spectrum of livability of new families to seniors in a complimentary heritage style Fort Langley setting and wonderful river frontage use.
Well I now see a highly densified bedroom community only, no artists lofts, no quaint mini village boutique hotel, no complimentary Fort Langley heritage setting and now not even a place for Langley seniors unless you are of course the "new age" senior of 45 years old and can afford the high priced units! And now we have also opened the barn doors to 4 story buildings in Fort Langley!
The developer(s) are certainly not to blame because they rightly will do as much as possible to maximize their profit margins and sales to satisfy their shareholders. That is private enterprise and totally correct and proper (within quality controlled limits).
The Langley Township Council on the other hand is totally at fault here in this case. Their job is balance and control. Their job is also to create a vision of the community together ccooperatively with the community (who are their shareholders by the way) and balance out the needs and wishes of the community along with the private profit motivated developers. This Mayor Albert's tired and arrogant council has lost touch with this requirement and more importantly with the community and it's shareholders, we the Taxpayers. When something's tired, it needs to be replaced.
If the developer's shareholders requirements are not met, their senior executives will be voted out and fired at their shareholder's meeting. November 2008 will be this Township Council's public taxpayer's shareholder meeting!
The present Langley Township council led by Mayor Alberts has failed miserably in regards to listening and especially taking care of their shareholder's interest. The clear signs of evidence of this are when they now very often begin to insist that they and their hired professionals and staff know MUCH better than the taxpayer's (their shareholders)!
When you have Township Taxpayers (shareholders) who have not been given proper opportunity to give input and in fact then try to even sneak things by them (in fact or perceived) in total disregard to their wishes, the taxpayers will obviously be angry and vocal. Frustration sets in and is demonstrated by the only thing the public shareholders can do such as interrupt in a council meeting to share their frustration. This is a clear sign of failure on the Mayor's council of poor process reminiscent of the LLT final days in power in the Council chambers. This is not what Cllr. Vickberg says when he calls these people not a good reflection of their community. This Mr. Vickberg is a reflection of your council's arrogance and closed minds. Two council meetings ago Cllr. Vickberg said he considered the new Bedford landing community as one with the upper existing Fort Langley community. Yet he in this Editor's opinion by his actions on this so called Seniors residence essentially ignores the pleas of in excess of 250 long term residents and sides with the ~25 new Bedford Landing residents and the developers. Why?
To make matters worse both Mayor Alberts and Cllr. Vickberg severely and publicly chastised these frustrated resident's pleas for a more public hearing and due process on the matter. The pleas from over 250 Fort Langley residents did not ask for a cancellation of the project. It simply asked for a delay to have more community input and a say in the decision. As one letter writer says this could have become a win-win situation. The Council's arrogance on this matter and others like the 248th street intersection demonstrates that the Mayor Alberts' majority slate on council is tired and in need of serious replacement in the upcoming November 2008 municipal election. The same arrogant decision makjing process is evident on Langley School Board as well.
In the meantime Langley & Fort Langley, in this Editor's opinion have lost a wonderful opportunity to create a unique Whistler type of complete community in the new Fort Langley in lieu of a highly densified bedroom commuting community. Sad, so very sad.
Posted by Langley Free Press at 9:32 am