The District of North Vancouver council found itself between a river and hard place Monday in deciding whether to build one or two new artificial turf soccer fields at Inter River Park.
Ultimately, council decided the neighbours who pleaded to preserve a forest in their backyard were more persuasive than the soccer community who wanted side-by-side pitches.
While it was somewhat disingenuous to suggest the much desired turf field could simply end up elsewhere on the North Shore, we respect council’s decision to respect the wishes of the neighbourhood. This time.
However, we call on neighbourhoods across the North Shore to look beyond their backyards during the upcoming debates about the district’s Delbrook lands and West Vancouver’s former Vancouver Coastal Health site.
North Vancouver lost its bus depot because two governments couldn’t find enough space for a new one. We truck our organics out of town because we don’t have a composting facility here.
Our public land is in short supply, our private land is extremely expensive and we are fiercely protective of anything green. That means just about any development that could make life better for some – a seniors’ centre, affordable housing, a place for kids to skateboard – will come at a cost. When the time comes, we hope our councils will pay that cost and choose the most needy rather than the most vocal.
If council refuses to inconvenience anyone, they will end up doing an injustice to everyone.
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