Nibbling away at the ALR: Powell River style

“Lot 450 out of ALR”
Powell River Town Crier, 4 Jul 1994
– Click to enlarge
Math matters

Arithmetic took me back to the archives.  There I was surprised to find, among a pile of dusty newspapers, something that contradicted much of what I thought I knew about Lot 450.

As a relative newcomer to the community I’ve come to love, learning the following just…well, it just breaks my heart.

What arithmetic?   The issue was that I couldn’t make sense of a 2006 Powell River Peak story that mentioned, in passing, that 112 hectares had been excluded from the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) “10 years ago”…

Since it’s pretty hard to hide 112 hectares in an area the size of Powell River, I first imagined that the article must have been referring to the “old golf course” or the “lower section of Block 55”.  But those land parcels just weren’t the right size, so my numbers weren’t adding up.   So where on earth was it?

Turns out that it referred to that entire section of land where I spent so much time in May.  The very place where a group of brave souls faced down a feller-buncher.  The spot where some Powell Riverites gained national attention over the idea that maintaining some urban forest around might be a wise thing to do.  Simply put, what many know as “Lot 450” used to be part of the ALR.

This is old news, of course, but what happened in 1994 and later may provide some new context with which to understand current plans, which will have repercussions for lands that were initially cataloged to preserve farmland.

As they say, the devil is in the details…

A brief history of the ALR in Powell River

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