Talking Willoughby, Brookswood, roads & marijuana with candidate David Davis…
The other week I sent a questionnaire to almost (I couldn’t find an email for a few) every candidate running for Council (not Mayor). The questions were intended to be nonpartisan, important, and focused on the future of Langley. I deeply appreciate the responses received as it would have taken these candidates serious time to respond. I hope that if you like the responses provided that you’ll share the posts of your favourite candidates. These posts are NOT endorsements of any candidate and the answers have NOT been edited. -Brad Richert
BRAD: Do you have a tangible solution for solving the highly perceived traffic woes in Willoughby, especially along 208th Street, 80th Avenue and 72nd Avenue.
DAVID: One solution would be to give incentives to the landowners to be able to access their frontage for the widening of 208th. This is definitely a priority and the roads are congested but borrowing $80 million to widen the road is very cost prohibited to taxpayers.
BRAD: Do you believe that road design in Willoughby’s NCPs are adequate for a build out population of 80,000-100,000? If not, do you believe they can be improved, if so, how?
DAVID: The current roads that we have now are NOT adequate. The opening of Labonte onto Glover will help with movement and as build out comes the 212th connector and 216th overpass will definitely help with East and West movement . As time goes on we will see that more transit will also be available but unfortunately that does not happen over night.
BRAD: Please provide up to 3 items that you believe can be improved in Brookswood’s NCPs that were missed in Willoughby’s planning. Will you advocate for these improvements before adopting further NCPs?
DAVID: Brookswood is different than Willoughby and is not projected to have as much growth. I believe that we should respect the OCP and NCP’s and not up-zone everything. I would definitely like to see more parks.
BRAD: A recent application for at Shepherd of the Valley in Willoughby was passed unanimously (absent Councillor Richter), changing the NCP zoning of Institutional/church to a high density comprehensive development zoning. Do you view NCPs in Willoughby (and soon Brookswood) to be very flexible “living documents” or do you maintain holding to a more strict interpretation of an NCP?
DAVID: I am generally pretty strict with abiding by NCP’s………however we were working with affordable housing and seniors and that was why I supported the different zoning.
BRAD: The Williams plan is moving forward with a traditional suburban style commercial core at the new 216th Street interchange. Do you believe for this plan adequately “future-proofs” the Northeast quadrant of Willoughby?
DAVID: I believe that the Williams commercial core at 216th is adequate. We did increase the size of the commercial space which I think was necessary.
BRAD: Brookswood is moving forward with simultaneous NCPs. Do you support this? Explain. Should one NCP be done at a time. If so, which area is priority?
DAVID: I think that the NCP’s should be done one at a time for a very obvious reason….services. The area closer to 200th should be worked on first.
BRAD: Phased development has been discussed for Brookswood, but no mechanism is yet in place. Do you support phased development such as in South Surrey’s Grandview neighbourhood? Explain.
DAVID: Yes I would support phased development in Brookswood. It makes sense, start one area and finish it.
BRAD: Parking is a common issue in many neighbourhoods in Langley, yet enjoys some of the most relaxed parking allowances in the region. Should new developments have more parking or less? Are there other parking-related solutions in your platform?
DAVID: Yes new development should have more parking but we also have to enforce parking rules for secondary suites and carports being used as storage facilities
BRAD: Higher density in Langley is suggested as a means to increase housing affordability, pay for amenities/infrastructure and protect ALR land. Agree or disagree? Explain.
DAVID: I would support higher density in the right area (like along the 200th corridor). If we want to protect our farmland than we have to build up and not out.
BRAD: Some communities are banning the smoking of legal marijuana in all public places. Some are restricting the use of the substance in a fashion similar to tobacco cigarettes. What are your views on a potential municipal bylaw?
DAVID: This is a new and challenging time for us all. There is a lot of uncertainty. I don’t like or support legalizing marijuana however this has come down from the Federal government. I think that the same regulations as tobacco should apply when it comes to smoking marijuana . So yes I would support a municipal bylaw restricting where marijuana can be smoked. I am also very concerned with cannabis production on our ALR land