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LETTER: Rest in peace, John Phillips Memorial Park

Re: John Phillips Park lease goes to negative vote ( News , Aug. 12)

Re: John Phillips Park lease goes to negative vote (News, Aug. 12)

The negative option, requiring those opposed to taking action but not those proposing a change, is a sneaky way to see the difference go through.

But that’s what Sooke council is doing to John Phillips Memorial Park, a dedicated parkland, which they cannot develop without the approval of electors.

The excuse that a referendum could cost $15,000 is just that - an excuse.

The negative vote counts on voters’ lack of knowledge, lack of interest, or just lack of willingness to go to Municipal Hall to pick up the form, fill it out, and return it.

So many people don’t have the time or desire to object to council’s eagerness to deprive Sooke residents of two acres of green space, turning it into an entertainment district with a 300-capacity banquet hall, a sound stage, concessions, parking lots for hundreds of cars, and whatnot.

All of this will spew noise and exhaust fumes on the remainder of the park from early morning until late night, making the life of those living around the park and those using it unbearable.

This direct attack on green spaces in a city runs counter to protecting the environment and stopping climate change. Where is council taking Sooke?

As to the “little pushback against the project” mentioned in the news story, some residents did express their objections to representatives of the Sooke Lions Club and the city planning department several times. But he who doesn’t want to hear has no ears.

The residents who care for John Phillips Memorial Park as a green space must convince as many people as possible to fill out the form objecting to this expropriation of our parkland. Otherwise, rest in peace, John Phillips Memorial Park.

Nina Leshinskaya


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