Archive for December, 2007

Moratorium on Development? Maybe.

December 18, 2007

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December 13, 2007

Ms. Kirsten Connor
Upton Farm Preservation Network
59 Queen Elizabeth Drive
Charlottetown, PE CIA 3A8

Dear Ms. Connor:

Thank you for your recent letter and your ongoing concern for the future of Upton Farm property. I understand that you have been in contact with officials from my office on this matter on different occasions.

Over the last number of months, we have made presentations to officials in the Canada Lands Company to convey the concerns expressed by many around the potential loss of green space at Upton Farm to proposed residential development.

Based upon input from a number of groups, Canada Lands Company has agreed, as you know, to a moratorium on the development of the property while a broader stakeholder consultation process is undertaken. We have been assured by officials from Canada Lands Company that these consultations will include, among other groups, the Province, Upton Farm Preservation Network, and the City of Charlottetown. The Province will be represented by Tracey Cutcliffe, my Deputy Minister of Communities, Cultural Affairs and Labour.

It is my hope that this process produces an outcome that all stakeholders can benefit from as efforts are made to secure green space opportunities for Islanders.

[Signed]

Robert Ghiz

Premier of Prince Edward Island

c.c. Tracey Cutcliffe, Communities Cultural Affairs and Labour

c.c. Robert Rowland, Canada Lands Company

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As you can see from the above letter from PEI Premier Robert Ghiz, Canada Lands has declared a moratorium on development of the Upton Farmlands  pending discussions with stakeholder groups.

This may possibly be good news, but PLEASE DO NOT relax your efforts to save this property as green space.

This is simply a moratorium, not a donation of the taxpayer-purchased property back to the residents of PEI, to whom it rightly belongs.

Premier Ghiz and his government appear to be in support of the efforts of the Upton Farm Preservation Network and its supporters, but IT IS VITAL to let people know that Canada Lands has neither wiithdrawn its application to develop the south side of this property into a mega housing subdivision nor has it said it will maintain the Upton Farmlands as green space.

Please continue your support of the effort to save the Upton Farmlands as green space!

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Curiousity

December 13, 2007

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Cold, delicately as the dark snow,
A fox’s nose touches twig, leaf;
Two eyes serve a movement, that now
And again now, and now, and now
Sets neat prints into the snow
Between trees, and warily a lame
Shadow lags by stump and in hollow
Of a body that is bold to come . . .
 

From “Thought-Fox” by Ted Hughes

Sometimes it just takes a glance to the edge of the path to see that a whole different world exists beyond our day-to-day concerns; and those who inhabit that world seem every bit as curious about us as we are about them.

Photo taken at Upton Farm by Kathy Kennedy


 

“This area could provide a green belt for Charlottetown,” Island Nature Trust

December 5, 2007

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November 23, 2007 
To:
The Upton Farm Preservation Network
c/o Kirsten Connor
59 Queen Elizabeth Drive
Charlottetown, PE  C1A 3A8

Island Nature Trust is a land trust which has been protecting Prince Edward Island natural areas since the 1980s. Our vision is to create a network of representative protected areas, connected by corridors of natural vegetation across PEI. A part of this network will be open, undeveloped areas around cities and towns. This network can only be achieved through cooperative efforts by a number of organizations and government agencies, not by one organization.

Charlottetown is a city with too few green spaces. Green, open spaces in urban environments are essential elements of well being for residents. Losing green space in any city is a serious and permanent loss, a loss that negatively affects human health, human cultures and the environment.

The federally-owned land formerly used by the Agricultural Research Station in Charlottetown, at Upton Road – which has been declared surplus, is one such space that has been threatened with sale and residential development. This area could, if protected as such, provide the foundation for a green belt for Charlottetown, and be important parkland for the health and well-being of all Islanders and visitors.

Prince Edward Island has very little provincial or federally owned lands and currently has the least protected green space in the whole country. Upton Farm is best suited as parkland or restored in part to forest, not as yet another residential subdivision.

Island Nature Trust supports the efforts of the Friends of Upton Farm to protect and preserve the property as open space, and encourage all individuals, groups and governments to work to maintain the farm as part of a green belt for the City of Charlottetown.

Thank you for your consideration,

(sgd)

Ben Hoteling
Chair, Board of Directors, Island Nature Trust